There has been no shortage of opinion in the blogosphere about recent amendments to the American Bar Association’s Model Rules of Professional Conduct. Although several amendments impacting an attorney’s use of technology were made, the amendment getting the most attention reads as follows (new language adopted August 2012 is underlined):
“Maintaining Competence: To maintain the requisite knowledge and skill, a lawyer should keep abreast of changes in the law and its practice, including the benefits and risks associated with relevant technology, engage in continuing study and education and comply with all continuing legal education requirements to which the lawyer is subject.” Continue Reading
“We have arranged a civilization in which most crucial elements profoundly depend on science and technology.” – Carl Sagan
The impact of technology on the business world cannot be overstated. Throughout history, the defining characteristic of humanity is our ability to utilize our intelligence and our tools in tandem to improve. We have rarely been satisfied to stand pat, to believe that this is the best we can do.
As a group, however, lawyers have rarely been on the cutting edge. Seldom have new methods and technology been adopted with open arms. Preferring to rest on the methods of eras past, oftentimes fearful of disruption due to “untested” tools and processes, we have been slow to adapt.
As lawyers, we are now being introduced to a concept long foreign to the industry: those who do not adapt will not survive.
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