Artificial intelligence (AI) programs are already making decisions in different judicial processes. In these cases, legal professionals check and then confirm the guidelines suggested by the software.
AI also already performs actions such as reading, interpreting, selecting, and drafting legal documents, changing the profile of activities in courts and law firms.
According to the most recent version of the "Justice in Numbers" survey, carried out by the CNJ (National Council of Justice), 108.3 million cases started in a digital version from 2008 to 2018 in the country.
All of this amount is a substantial amount of material for AI systems and robots to collect data, identify patterns, and classify the information that matters for each type of legal professional.
In the country's courts, technological initiatives have two main focuses: bringing together processes that have the same legal issues to decide them together and automating tasks to speed up the processing of cases.
In the STJ (Superior Court of Justice), the AI system received the name of Socrates and was "trained" using data from 300,000 court decisions, according to the court's adviser.
Now the AI "reads" the new processes and groups together those with similar subjects, so that they can be judged in blocks. The software is also used in screening to bar the entry of some types of causes that are unrelated to the court's duties.
This digital barrier is important because the Brazilian Justice has created a category called repetitive demand, which applies to the entire process that has as its theme a legal issue common to thousands of other cases.
These are legal issues that involve millions of people, such as readjustments in health plans or indexes for the correction of public rates.
In this type of situation, the identification of an appeal as a repetitive demand causes it to be returned to the court of origin in the states. When the superior court decides on the matter, each state court will apply the judicial decision to each case.
As the use of AI in the legal area advances, there is also a debate on ethical issues. "We cannot take the human sensibility out of the trial at any time. There are causes that can never be passed through machines, such as family causes. For a child custody problem, there is no formula. For this type of case, there are a series of circumstances that only the human being will be able to define", said the retired judge of the São Paulo Court of Justice and director of the Faap law course, José Roberto Neves Amorim.
Translated by Kiratiana Freelon