Lawyers prepare for ‘driverless M&A’ as smart contract era dawns

“Gilbert+Tobin managing partner Danny Gilbert said disruptive change to law firms is inevitable and they will get smaller as lawyers are put out of jobs by automation of their role as a trusted adviser.

“Legal services and legal products have been driven by the human mind and the human hand, and we’re about to see a fundamental change in that. We have driverless cars, we have robots doing surgery and we will have driverless M&A,” he said.

“You will have fewer, smaller law firms at the top of the pyramid and I think that blockchain and smart contracting will have a very large role in further commoditising legal products.”

Henry Davis York partner Matthew McMillan said smart contracts are currently being used to digitise business rules but may soon move to codify legal agreements.

“We are seeing a greater level of sophistication around the conditional logic that can be built into the blockchain and the very real possibility that code could be used to articulate verify and execute an agreement between two parties in place of traditional contractual arrangements,” he said.”



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