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AI in Arbitration: Transforming dispute resolution with machine intelligence

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By Rahul Pandey(Designate Partner) and Akash Singh(Principal Associate) from S&A Law Offices

Artificial Intelligence, or machine intelligence, has gained momentum over the past few decades as various sectors integrate it to deliver more efficient results. The challenges posed by Covid-19 forced the legal profession to rethink its relationship with technology and embrace it in daily practice. The ability of AI to develop its own ‘thinking patterns’ is a crucial aspect in understanding its significance in enhancing arbitration effectiveness. Given the increasing virtualization and digitalization of arbitration, the logical next step is the integration of AI-based technology. The use of AI in arbitral proceedings offers synergistic opportunities.

Methods of incorporating AI in dispute resolution

AI holds immense potential in enhancing dispute resolution, particularly in the time-consuming stage of document collection and review. AI tools expedite this process by identifying key words and flags, thereby saving both time and money. Notably, the UK case of Pyrrho Investments Ltd. v. MWB Property Ltd. pioneered the use of AI for organizing and sorting documents. AI tools can also analyze past arbitration results to predict outcomes for similar disputes, assist arbitrators in reaching decisions, and identify potential language issues in reports and documents.

Impact of AI on dispute resolution

Incorporating AI in dispute resolution frees up court time for more complex cases and provides claimants with an affordable means of obtaining enforceable judgments, particularly for straightforward cases. By predicting case outcomes and analyzing evidence, AI tools expedite decision-making, increasing the likelihood of timely justice. Lawyers benefit from more informed decisions due to access to a larger and more accurate data pool.

Challenges pertaining to the use of AI in dispute resolution

While AI tools are primarily used for data collection and analysis by lawyers, law firms, and arbitrators, they can introduce biases into the process. The COMPAS case in the United States demonstrated the potential for bias in AI tools, which, if undetected, could adversely affect arbitration and judicial decisions. Additionally, AI systems rely on sensitive and personal data, posing challenges to digital privacy and consent.

Currently, India lacks legislation to monitor and regulate the use of AI in dispute resolution, despite recognizing its advantages. It is crucial to scrutinize data collected by AI tools, as it may contain flaws or biases. Moreover, AI tools complement arbitrators and judges but cannot replace them.

Indian Perspective

India is in the early stages of exploring the integration of AI into its legal system. While the Supreme Court has developed AI-enabled tools for legal research, AI’s distinct inclusion in arbitration remains a distant prospect. The interplay between AI and arbitration in India is evolving and worth monitoring.

The future of AI and dispute resolution

AI-powered tools have the potential to play a more significant role in pre-trial stages and influence the entire course of trials. Currently, automated decision-making tools are used primarily in straightforward cases and require careful evaluation before pronouncement. Opportunities for improvement in AI-based decision formulation and prediction are substantial, as evidenced by initiatives like the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC) unveiling “SIAC AI” to expedite the arbitration process’s effectiveness.

Conclusion

The technology surrounding the incorporation of Artificial Intelligence is evolving, and as it continues to grow, the associated challenges will become more apparent. Parties involved in disputes must stay updated on the latest developments, while arbitrators and judges should ethically incorporate AI-based tools into their decision-making processes. When used correctly, AI tools have the potential to make the dispute resolution process more efficient and transformative.

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