89 episodes

LawNext is a weekly podcast hosted by Bob Ambrogi, who is internationally known for his writing and speaking on legal technology and innovation. Each week, Bob interviews the innovators and entrepreneurs who are driving what’s next in the legal industry. From legal technology startups to new law firm business models to enhancing access to justice, Bob and his guests explore the future of law and legal practice.

LawNext Populus Radio

    • Tech News
    • 4.9, 19 Ratings

LawNext is a weekly podcast hosted by Bob Ambrogi, who is internationally known for his writing and speaking on legal technology and innovation. Each week, Bob interviews the innovators and entrepreneurs who are driving what’s next in the legal industry. From legal technology startups to new law firm business models to enhancing access to justice, Bob and his guests explore the future of law and legal practice.

    Court Buddy Founder James Jones Jr. on Being A Black Entrepreneur in Legal Tech

    Court Buddy Founder James Jones Jr. on Being A Black Entrepreneur in Legal Tech

    In 2015, the husband-and-wife team of James Jones Jr. and Kristina Jones founded Court Buddy, a service that matches consumers with vetted lawyers at affordable prices. Last November, the couple stepped aside from the business to pursue other interests. In their time running the company, they had raised $7.1 million and won numerous awards and honors. 
    Achieving success as a legal tech startup is notable in itself, but James and Kristina Jones also were among the few Black founders in an industry with a striking diversity problem. One survey of the legal tech industry found that only 2.3% of founders were Black and 3.1% were Latinx. 
    Among the milestones they achieved, Court Buddy was named the winner of the American Bar Association’s Brown Select Award for Legal Access in 2017, a winner of the inaugural American Entrepreneurship Award in 2016, and a winner of a Webby Award in 2018. When they raised their first financing round in 2017, Kristina was recognized as only the 14th African-American woman ever to raise $1 million or more. Last year, Black Enterprise named the couple as its Techpreneurs of the Year. 
    In this episode of LawNext, James Jones, a former practicing lawyer, joins host Bob Ambrogi to share their story of starting, building and ultimately stepping away from Court Buddy, and of how being a Black entrepreneur in legal tech presented certain obstacles he otherwise would not have encountered. 
    NEW:
    Comment on this show: Record a voice comment on your mobile phone and send it to info@lawnext.com.
    We are now on Patreon! Subscribe to our page to be able to access show transcripts, or to submit a question for our guests.

    • 48 min
    Sociologist Rebecca Sandefur on Enhancing Access to Justice

    Sociologist Rebecca Sandefur on Enhancing Access to Justice

    Sociologist Rebecca Sandefur is one of the world’s leading scholars on access to justice. Professor at the Sanford School of Social and Family Dynamics at Arizona State University, she is also a faculty fellow at the American Bar Foundation, where she founded and leads the Access to Justice Research Initiative. In 2018, she was named a recipient of a MacArthur “genius grant” for her work promoting an evidence-based approach to increasing access to justice for low-income communities. 
    In the wake of Washington state’s decision to sunset its pioneering Limited License Legal Technicians program, host Bob Ambrogi asks Sandefur about that program, which she evaluated in a 2017 report, and about other programs in which those other than lawyers provide legal assistance. 
    They also discuss access to justice more broadly, including the scope and causes of the justice gap, the obstacles to bridging it, the impact of race and class on access to justice, what works and what does not to close the gap, and why regulatory reform and technology are essential to enhancing access to justice. 
    NEW:
    Comment on this show: Record a voice comment on your mobile phone and send it to info@lawnext.com.
    We are now on Patreon! Subscribe to our page to be able to access show transcripts, or to submit a question for our guests.

    • 39 min
    Exploring the Meaning of Legal Terms through Corpus Linguistics

    Exploring the Meaning of Legal Terms through Corpus Linguistics

    At BYU Law in Provo, Utah, a first-of-its-kind technology platform is enabling legal researchers to explore the meanings of legal words and phrases by examining the contexts in which they historically were used. The Law and Corpus Linguistics platform enables users to examine large collections of historical texts to help determine, for example, what early drafters meant by a phrase such as “bear arms.” 
    In this episode of LawNext, my guest is David Armond, head of infrastructure and technology and senior law librarian at BYU Law, who was instrumental in helping create and launch the platform. We discuss this emerging field of corpus linguistics and how it is being used by lawyers, judges and legal scholars. 
    The BYU Law collection is now home to seven collections of historical text, or corpora, including founding-era American English (1760-1799), early modern English (1475-1800), Supreme Court opinions, U.S. caselaw, records of the Constitutional Convention of 1787, and more. 
    As it happened, host Bob Ambrogi interviewed Armond live at BYU Law on the very day that the school decided to close down due to the coronavirus crisis. Before discussing their scheduled topic of corpus linguistics, Armond and Ambrogi had a conversation about how a law school prepares to shut down and go online. That conversation was posted as LawNext Episode 66: How One Law School Prepared for Coronavirus Shutdown. 
     
    NEW:
    Comment on this show: Record a voice comment on your mobile phone and send it to info@lawnext.com.
    We are now on Patreon! Subscribe to our page to be able to access show transcripts, or to submit a question for our guests.

    • 30 min
    Vishal Sunak, CEO of AI Contract Management Company LinkSquares

    Vishal Sunak, CEO of AI Contract Management Company LinkSquares

    LinkSquares, the Boston-based provider of AI-powered contract management and analysis technology for corporate legal departments, announced a major new product this week. Called LinkSquares Finalize, it extends the company’s technology into the pre-signature stage, helping its customers create and approve contracts more quickly and efficiently. 
    This news comes just three months after LinkSquares raised $14.5 million in a Series A financing round, bringing its total financing to $21 million. And it comes after a year in which the company saw 300% year-over-year growth. 
    On this episode of LawNext, host Bob Ambrogi speaks with Vishal Sunak, who cofounded LinkSquares in 2015 and has been its CEO ever since. He and cofounder Chris Combs started the company after participating in the acquisition of the company where they formerly worked, Backupify, and witnessing the need for a better way to manage enterprise contracts. 
    Hear how they bootstrapped and built the company from scratch, why Sunak sees contract management as so vital to corporations, and where he sees the industry heading. 
    NEW:
    Comment on this show: Record a voice comment on your mobile phone and send it to info@lawnext.com.
    We are now on Patreon! Subscribe to our page to be able to access show transcripts, or to submit a question for our guests.

    • 36 min
    A Coronavirus Success Story: How A State Bar and Two Legaltech Companies Partnered to Help the Unemployed

    A Coronavirus Success Story: How A State Bar and Two Legaltech Companies Partnered to Help the Unemployed

    Today on LawNext: A coronavirus success story – how a state bar, anticipating a tidal wave of unemployment claims, partnered with two legaltech companies to launch a pro bono portal in barely more than a week. 
    On April 27, 2020, the New York State Bar Association launched a website devoted to helping those who need unemployment assistance due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The site provides assistance with filing an unemployment claim and access to pro bono attorneys for those whose claims are denied. 
    The launch came less than two weeks after New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo reached out to the bar, asking for its help in preparing for the anticipated onslaught of claims. The bar, realizing it would need help from a technology developer, reached out to practice management company Clio, which in turn reached out to the pro bono portal company Paladin. 
    In barely a week, the three teams got the site up and running. On this episode, we hear the story of how they did that from three who were directly involved:
    Henry M. (Hank) Greenberg, president of the NYSBA and shareholder in the law firm Greenberg Traurig. Jack Newton, cofounder and CEO of Clio. Kristen Sonday, cofounder of Paladin.  NEW:
    Comment on this show: Record a voice comment on your mobile phone and send it to info@lawnext.com.
    We are now on Patreon! Subscribe to our page to be able to access show transcripts, or to submit a question for our guests.

    • 44 min
    Mark Harris on the Post-Pandemic Tsunami for Corporate Contracts

    Mark Harris on the Post-Pandemic Tsunami for Corporate Contracts

    Mark Harris is sounding an alarm – or, as he puts it, staging an intervention – for corporate counsel. 
    Harris and Alec Guettel, the original founders 20 years ago of alternative legal services provider Axiom and, since last year, the CEO and CFO of contract management company Knowable, have taken the unusual step of posting an open letter that they describe as an unsolicited intervention for general counsel. 
    Businesses are about to confront a tidal wave of urgent questions from suppliers, customers, partners, employees, and others, they warn, the answers to which are buried in thousands or hundreds of thousands of commercial contracts. Unfortunately, they say, most companies don’t know what’s in their contracts or even, in many cases, where those contracts are. 
    “We woke up a couple weeks ago and realized, there is no time,” Harris and Guettel wrote. “Our clients, you, are drifting through these pandemic rapids, focused on more important issues like the immediate safety and sanity of your employees, heading right for a cliff.”
    What has led to this situation and what can corporate counsel do about it? In this episode of LawNext, Harris, who we previously interviewed in Episode 56, returns to LawNext to share his analysis and advice. 
    NEW:
    Comment on this show: Record a voice comment on your mobile phone and send it to info@lawnext.com.
    We are now on Patreon! Subscribe to our page to be able to access show transcripts, or to submit a question for our guests.
    Thank you to our sponsor, MyCase, and to John E. Grant and Agile Professionals LLC for being a lead Patreon supporter of our show.

    • 44 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
19 Ratings

19 Ratings

JoshCrist ,

Entertaining, insightful and actionable! 🔥

Whether you’re already a leader who enjoys wrestling with the shifting legal landscape of our modern world, or just getting started as a catalyst for change within your organization - this is a must-listen podcast for you! Bob does an incredible job leading conversations that cover a huge breadth of topics related to the ins and outs of successfully navigating an ever changing legal and technological ecosystem, from leaders actually innovating in the field. Highly recommend listening and subscribing!

WILOTRFan ,

Bob leads the way for legal tech podcasts

Bob’s ability to bring on top-notch guests each week and cover innovation and legal tech issues is second to none. This is definitely one of my go to podcasts to keep on top of what’s changing in the legal industry and getting to know who the innovators are who are leading the change.

Joseph Schieffer ,

Great legal innovation podcast

This is my weekly "go to" for a legal innovation podcast during a workout. A few specific things that I appreciate about the podcast:

1) The variety of guests--academics, startups, technologists, in-house counsel, private law firms, and others.
2) The guests on the show are some of the best of the best in legal innovation.
3) It is focused on innovation in the practice of law, not just tech.

Bob Ambrogi is an artisan of an interviewer. This podcast is a gift to the legal innovation community. Thanks Bob!

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