Blockchain technology has the potential to disrupt each and every industry. Specifically, the Ethereum blockchain is making unique and versatile applications possible. Ethereum has smart contracts which are now being used by the legal industry. The advantage of these self-enforcing contracts is that they execute exactly how they have been written.
Due to the exact and precise execution of these smart contracts, their popularity has been increasing with the legal industry as well. Ten law firms and four legal institutions have announced their decision to join the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance – a consortium of 200 companies and institutions. Even bigger firms like Hogan Lovells are starting to use smart contracts. Ethereum’s usage by such larger firms is ensuring that smart contracts find more and more acceptability among other smaller legal firms as well.
In total, over 500+ law firms all over the United States are studying the feasibility of smart contracts and the efficiency of using smart contracts in their legal field.
One thing which many of the law firms are concerned about is that they would need proper technical expertise in order to use these smart contracts in their own field. Most of the law firms are not able to handle the technical side of the smart contracts. That is why they are collaborating with technical specialists in order to create smart contracts per their requirement.
On the other hand, many experts believe that smart contracts are actually a double-edged sword. If they are not written correctly, they would automatically execute exactly as they have been written. This could ensure mean that wrong contracts are executed as well. That is why they open up new doors for exploitation as well. Owing to this very reason, the collaboration needs to be maintained carefully in order to execute the contracts as per the needs of the legal industry.
Another fear also is that smart contracts might completely replace the attorneys. This is especially true in niche tasks like deciding the terms and conditions of any contract. However, it would open up many new possibilities in the legal field and ease of the legal work for the normal public. This can, however, be achieved only with the help of collaboration between the tech industry and the legal industry.