Will Legal Technology Skills Be Added To The Bar Exam?

There has been much discussion recently about possible changes to the bar exam. One suggestion proposed is to add legal technology as a new area tested on the exam. Bloomberg legal analyst Robert Brown recently wrote an article making the case for adding this subject.

Brown notes that most law schools now offer some form of legal technology training to their own students. And legal technology plays a large role in the profession overall. According to results from Bloomberg’s 2021 Legal Technology Survey, all legal organizations and departments now utilize technology to some extent, making it important to objectively assess the skills that are becoming more indispensable every year.

Dauna Williams, an adjunct professor at the Northern Illinois University College of Law stated, “The bar has to demand it because our clients are demanding it. It’s a necessary step to ensure that lawyers know how to evolve legal analysis into technological problem-solving.”

While attorneys often use third-party vendors to handle their technological needs, the failure to understand how to utilize legal technology and interpret the information gained from it could have catastrophic consequences including missing or misinterpreting crucial information or even inadvertently disclosing privileged material.

On the other hand, Casey Flaherty, co-founder of the law tech training company Procertas, said that “it would be hard for the bar exam questions and curriculum to keep pace with the newest tech offerings.”

Concerns such as these are why many think that simply implementing a mandatory curriculum of technological training in CLE requirements is a better idea than adding it directly to the bar exam. And in fact, the State Bars of Florida and North Carolina have already done this, with New York poised to add required technological CLE credits in the near future.

You can read Brown’s full article here.

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