A court case may take months to conclude but searching details about one will only take seconds!
A new artificial intelligence (AI) enabled search tool allows users to browse through millions of legal case records and provides them the most relevant results in seconds, its makers say.
LegitQuest, a website launched earlier this week on the eve of National Law Day, is the latest in the line of ventures aiming to integrate technology with legal research.
According to its creators - a team of tech-savvy attorneys, engineers and designers - the platform has a unique searching feature, called iSearch, which is powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI), machine learning and data analytics.
The feature browses through millions of records and gives users the most relevant results in seconds, its makers said.
iDRAF is another feature which will help users to reduce the time in analysing the case law. With the help of deep learning and natural language processing, users can cull out the issues, facts, arguments, reasoning, and the decision of all judgements of the Supreme Court of India since 1950, they said.
iGraphics is another utility feature in the website, which the creators claim is a first of its kind in India.
"One would be able to see the treatment of case law condensed in the form of graphics and can map the treatment of being relied on, distinguished, overruled etc up to the latest case law," said Karan Kalia, founder and CEO of the startup.
iGraphics is trained to understand the treatment parameters, which is then checked for quality and reliability by the team of experts.
"Users do not have to waste time reading the entire judgement only to find that it has been overruled," said Karan.
"In India, stakeholders of judiciary - lawyers, judges, researchers, scholars, government, law students and others have been stuck with antiquated tools when it comes to legal research. The new generation of lawyers and also the one practicing are shifting from the conventional book reading to online research," said Karan.
He added that their search tool is different as publishers and online portals provide headnote (interpretation of a case) as the only value for a judgement.
"Users tend to read the headnotes and then go to the paragraph which has been interpreted in the headnotes only to find that it has been wrongly interpreted and sometimes has expanded or contracted the scope of the judgement with their interpretation. It is done by a team which is not qualified to interpret a Supreme Court or a High Court judgement," he said.
Karan added, "headnotes are of persuasive value in law and do not have a binding effect. What is binding is the portion which we offer from the judgement itself through iDRAF. There is no interpretation but analyses that this part of the judgement is decision, issue, reasoning and arguments."
At present, portals like 'Indian Kanoon' and 'Law Khoj' also provide a free database of court cases.
LegitQuest has eminent jurist Ram Jethmalani as its investor, patron and adviser.
Speaking at the launch of the search tool, Supreme Court judge Justice A K Sikri said: "LegitQuest may become a tool to felicitate and a tool for augmentation and not automation in the sense that it replaces the lawyers community itself."
"I think the technology Legit Quest has adopted is a next level one, where it is not simply throwing up searches from database which exists," Justice S Ravindra Bhat, from High Court of Delhi, added.
"The algorithms that control and drive this programme attempt to find out context from our search, having regard to our past history of searches and find out which is the most relevant," he said.