When Josh Browder was a computer science student at Stanford University, he racked up a lot of parking tickets he couldn’t pay. As a result, he became an expert in exploiting legal loopholes to skirt his fines.
From that experience, he created DoNotPay, an artificial intelligence that began writing legalistic letters for people with parking tickets who want to contest them.
Since its origins in 2015, the app has expanded its expertise and now lawyers for its 150,000 subscribers who have insurance claims, complaints to businesses or government agencies, applications for visas, and other minor matters.
Now, for the first time, in February DoNotPay will represent a client in court.
The client, fighting a speeding ticket, will have the DoNotPay app on a smartphone that will listen to court proceedings and advise the defendant on how to respond.
The client has agreed to say only what the AI tells the defendant to say. If the defendant loses the case, DoNotPay will cover the cost of all fines and other expenses, Browder has pledged.
DoNotPay “is all about language, and that’s what lawyers charge hundreds or thousands of dollars an hour to do,” he said. “A lot of lawyers are just charging way too much money to copy and paste documents and I think they will definitely be replaced, and they should be replaced.”
DoNotPay says it exists to “fight corporations, beat bureaucracy, and sue anyone at the press of a button.”
TRENDPOST: Artificial intelligence is writing sports stories for newspapers, painting pictures, and publishing scientific papers reporting on its own research. Giving it routine legal tasks shouldn’t raise eyebrows.
However, if it can beat a human attorney in court, the future of automated legal advice will suddenly not only be much broader than has been imagined, but also will have arrived much sooner.