7.9/10 job score
risk level
by 2030
or $61.02 hourly
as of 2020

What is the risk of automation?

We calculate this occupation to have an automation risk score of 5% (Totally Safe)

[More info]
Qualities required for this occupation:
Social Perceptiveness
very important
quite important
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What do you think the risk of automation is?

How likely do you think this occupation will be taken over by robots/AI within the next 20 years?

How quickly is this occupation growing?

The number of 'Lawyers' job openings is expected to rise 8.9% by 2030
'Lawyers' is expected to be a fast growing occupation in comparison to other occupations.
* Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for the period between 2020 and 2030.
Updated projections are due Sep 2022.

What are the median wages for 'Lawyers' in the United States?

In 2020 the median annual wage for 'Lawyers' was $126,930, or $61.02 hourly
'Lawyers' are paid 202.6% higher than the national median wage, which stands at $41,950
* Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics

How many people are employed in this occupation?

As of 2020 there were 658,120 people employed as Lawyers.
This represents around 0.47% of the employed workforce across the United States.

Job description

Represent clients in criminal and civil litigation and other legal proceedings, draw up legal documents, or manage or advise clients on legal transactions. May specialize in a single area or may practice broadly in many areas of law.

SOC Code: 23-1011.00

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Leave a comment

Dhruv agrawal (No chance) says
Law is a profession which requires critical thinking, reasoning and analysing. Robots have less chance to do this efficiency as it is one of the basic difference between robots and humans
Nov 28, 2020 at 05:49 PM
hypocrite says
If law could be perfected, why don't the most intelligent people come together and form it? It's because it's unethical and sometimes disgusting. If law is 'perfected' then we will be living in a dystopia. Everyone will have to follow the rules, without being able to think for themselves. Unlike robots, human feel and empathize with each other; so if law could be truly perfected and automated, that will essentially strip away our human rights and make us no better than cold unfeeling robots.
Nov 22, 2020 at 11:21 AM
MooshroomsRCool (Small chance) says
There is little chance of courtroom lawyers being replaced by robots. For this profession you need the ability to read people, to be able to sense emotion and build on that. Robots thus far are not capable of doing this.
Oct 30, 2020 at 01:14 PM
Ryder (No chance) says
Because you know how many years of programming it would take probably 5 YEARS they would have to code every law of the united states of America in it so not a chance
Oct 16, 2020 at 02:29 PM
- (Could go either way) says
Basically, robots could be made to FIND arguments in a court. But I have a hard time thinking they can defend you in a court.
Oct 13, 2020 at 05:41 PM
Murdadog (No chance) says
No A.I. has been invented yet than can scam as well as a human. Except Brad Parscales "Death Star" did to Trump
Sep 17, 2020 at 01:10 AM
Simon (Likely) says
Most tasks will be replaced be educated people using an AI interface like watson, to solve their problems by themselves.
Sep 10, 2020 at 07:12 PM
jiyun (Small chance) says
A lawyer should communicate, and empathize with their clients. These are exactly what human have to do. If robots do that, many clients won't think that they are empath and protected. A lawyer is the job that FEELs the client's emotion.
Sep 02, 2020 at 03:39 AM
Roland (No chance) says
Lawyer is too broad of a term- basic discovery, looking over contracts etc. can be easily automated, but the interpretation of law as well as arguments for the interpretation are out of reach of computers.
Aug 08, 2020 at 06:57 PM
Audrey Liew (Highly likely) says
My tasks can be highly automated
Jul 23, 2020 at 09:56 AM
thomas (No chance) says
Firstly, Robots don't have the ability to respond to a question, not only that but they cant express their feelings to make an argument.
Jun 24, 2020 at 11:43 PM
Aryaa Dubey (Could go either way) says
There are definitely some aspects of being in the legal field that just require a simple application of rules and procedures, and transforming the entire judicial system as one that is automated could happen, but lawyers and the judiciary would go kicking and screaming mostly because it would be of great interest to them to maintain a 'human touch' in the field, regardless of how good at critical thinking the AI becomes. It is possible, though.
Jun 15, 2020 at 12:01 PM
Rodd College (Highly likely) says
The world’s first AI lawyer called ROSS by IBM has already replaced lawyers, next one in line please.
Jun 05, 2020 at 02:17 PM
Dhruv agrawal says
1) Ross is a legal assistant
2) How often do you see ROSS the robot fight cases in e-courts
3) Robots can only refer to cases but they cant place an argument. And arguments are driven by facts and morality

Do share your views on it after considering this
Nov 28, 2020 at 06:11 PM
Jaida P (Small chance) says
The paperwork and communication may become more automated but I don’t see how a robot could represent in court.
May 19, 2020 at 04:01 PM
Sebastian Cojocaru says
Robots don't receive bribes.
May 14, 2020 at 09:04 AM
Cristian (Could go either way) says
It could go in any direction, that is, there are already machines in the US that try to impersonate the judge or lawyer but this will always be part of the human. I believe that there will be a help towards the lawyer, as an assistant that can improve the function of the lawyer in their cases.
I do not see a replacement very feasible but rather a help towards the lawyer or towards the judiciary.
May 09, 2020 at 06:17 PM
nmk (Highly likely) says
The imperfection of the law preserves lawyers
Apr 12, 2020 at 04:15 PM
David Ančić (No chance) says
I think that lawyers will not be replaced by machines because in that work you need to be open minded and think about other things not just about law
Mar 18, 2020 at 11:24 PM
Man says
It won't happen because lawyers will make it illegal for them to be replaced.
Mar 15, 2020 at 05:21 AM
Ramon (Highly likely) says
if they see all the data from the "person in question", with a little bit of AI it could figure out something
Mar 09, 2020 at 03:06 AM
Renan (Highly likely) says
In reality, what lawyers do is learn rules and how to apply them in specific cases, that is a task that can certainly be automated with machine learning
Mar 05, 2020 at 03:00 PM
Val (No chance) says
For engineers, IT people and the common person in the street, there persist the idea that law and the judicial function is merely applying X rule to Y case, prevented by that specific rule. This is a very old idea, one born from 17th and 18th century philosophers such as Montesquieu (the judge acting only as the "mouth" of the law.) This idea also leads to something called "formalism" in legal theory, which leads to injustice and cases where the law could be applied in an unfair way.

Other than that, there are other factors to consider when we ask ourselves if law will be automated:

The actual jobs - I think "menial" tasks such as contract revision on the states can (an already can be done) by an AI.

However, other functions such as advocacy and the judging function performed either by a judge or a jury, cannot be replaced by robots. This in part because, as Hart puts it, law is an institution.

If we put this perspective in the light of automation, we must turn into the rules and principles that govern the institution which we know as law. This becomes much more clear when we are talking about criminal law and the principles that govern it, and when we contrast it to algorithms which, for example, determine if someone will go on parole or not (algorithms which already exist and are in use.) however, two things are very obvious once we look at them, the first being that these algorithms struggle with what is known as "AI bias" and second, that the reason of why they do so is because they are trained with, and designed to operate, under utilitarian evaluations of morality.

Any person who has at least read some legal philosophy and jurisprudence would notice how problematic these evaluations can be, and their possible consequences, just by glancing at them.

A purely Kantian approach to morality in these machines would also be quite problematic (going back to my original example of just applying a rule over X case that fits.) Are law and morality even two things that need to have a necessary connection? This is still a very much undecided question, and one to which positivists tend to answer "no."

Other things to have in mind are the way judges evaluate proof and evidence, and how they are required to bring said evaluations to light in order for any judging to be fair, and the very nature of law and jurisprudence. "What is law" "What are rules" are questions that still persist to this day.

There's a lot more than could be said, also, about the relation of law to politics, specially regarding the law-making process. So too is politics a job which could hardly be automated, because of its intrinsic nature.

Feb 29, 2020 at 05:00 PM
Karst says
Laws would have to be rewritten to be designed to be applied that way. No subjective language. Very specific outlining.
Aug 11, 2020 at 07:44 PM
Olyannincs Gábor says
A good nice Neural Net specialised in branches of Law and we are quite OK.
Feb 26, 2020 at 09:13 PM
Nate (Small chance) says
Human lawyers will still exist, but most of the job market will be occupied by bits (ie for discovery)
Feb 23, 2020 at 02:45 AM
Dave (Highly likely) says
Lawyers will be automated for similar reasons to accountants and auditors. It’s inevitable
Feb 16, 2020 at 08:51 AM
yep. (No chance) says
Human connections are hard when you aren't human
Feb 10, 2020 at 08:34 AM
The Dude (Highly likely) says
It's already being replaced by AI for writing contracts and other clerical work, such as setting up businesses.
Feb 07, 2020 at 01:43 AM
Nur Ashsams(Adult actor-Youtube channel)) says
My anticipation is that every logical step can be automated.
Jan 31, 2020 at 05:26 PM
William (Small chance) says
Depending on the robot, they will either be programmed to act one way, or learn off of court experiences, but the more important reason is that lawyers hold a very important job of protecting the rights of their client, and robots are rather senseless and talk without actually how to help them as a human being
Jan 29, 2020 at 07:30 PM
Nguyen (No chance) says
imagine optimus prime trying to prove if someone is a murderer or not
Jan 28, 2020 at 04:25 AM
Themis Tovle (Highly likely) says
IBM Ross + underestimation of geometrical progression of learning machines. Law is very algorithmic already = all the more assimilable by A I
Jan 20, 2020 at 06:45 AM
AIbot (Highly likely) says
Almost everything we do will be recorded. AI will use precedents and make decisions quicker. Also will be able to detect lies and stress etc
Dec 16, 2019 at 01:43 PM
Law Yer (Could go either way) says
We have already outsourced doc review and the low level lawyer work that was done by associates in large firms. To imagine that AI couldn't put together a user interface to construct a brief would be foolish. We never thought that Indian sweatshops would be producing submissions to the US Supreme Court, but 15 years ago they already had. Whose job won't be taken over by AI? Also - why do we keep bringing more foreign workers in with automation poised to crush the workforce?
Dec 16, 2019 at 01:27 AM
Hi (No chance) says
Lawyers are human.
Dec 09, 2019 at 09:19 PM
blue fin says
really I had no idea!
Jun 14, 2020 at 08:28 AM
ok boomer says
Jun 15, 2020 at 03:58 AM
Mr Law (Highly likely) says
Already starting with AI, many lawyers already are using AI to search through previous cases.
Nov 22, 2019 at 01:56 PM
Bahlul says
that's work of a paralegal, not a lawyer
Apr 30, 2020 at 01:38 PM
Not Mr Law (No chance) says
This is talking about replacing lawyers, not helping them. The amount of programming needed for an AI to replace a real person in court is enormous. Even then it would only operate inside its programming. No way will this job be taken by an AI.
May 05, 2020 at 02:38 PM
Lucas (Highly likely) says
because I want to be lawyer
Nov 12, 2019 at 01:21 PM
Aryaa Dubey says
I feel ya :/
Jun 15, 2020 at 12:03 PM
terrence says
i want to be a lawyer like saul from better call saul
Nov 12, 2020 at 10:31 AM
Czyoen Dexcel (No chance) says
Because lawyers need emotion.
Nov 12, 2019 at 03:34 AM
Georgia says
no they don't your nuts......
Jun 15, 2020 at 03:51 AM
AI Engineer (Likely) says
Language models are beating human level comprehension.
Expert systems are being built on tasks assume "hard for computers."
Oct 30, 2019 at 03:12 PM
CSGuy (Likely) says
Computers are inherently more rational than humans(because they optimize utility and have no emotions), with enough computing power computers can construct better logical arguments than humans.
Oct 25, 2019 at 09:55 PM
ConcernedCitizen says
You are forgetting; that lawyers do not only rely on logical arguments: in common law systems for example, appealing emotionally to the jury plays a huge role in the verdict.
Apr 09, 2020 at 09:09 PM
CJ (Could go either way) says
Nature of dispute resolution is changing
Oct 24, 2019 at 06:12 AM
May (Likely) says
I think some functions a lawyer execute are mostly human, but lawyers also deal with lots of data. This part is already being organized by AI in automatized apps and mechanisms. There are practical chances that, in a few decades, the occupation will get more amplified to technological use
Oct 06, 2019 at 01:05 PM
Hexel says
Lawyers are biased, make lot of mistakes and tend to twist the law for their own benefits.

Robot should replace lawyers totally to prevent these.

However, there should be investigators to input other factors to come-up with the final result.
Oct 04, 2019 at 10:29 PM
Rubens Luiz Schmidt Rodrigues Massaro (Small chance) says
Because legal work involves most of the time direct ethical and social decisions and the bars and representative classes (who are not weak of influence) would not allow. Only a Government who doesn't care at all about this could approve the "robotization".
Oct 04, 2019 at 04:29 PM
Art (No chance) says
Everyone comes out of Law school learning the same knowledge, however, how it is applied to the specific context of a case is highly individualized. This is an industry where the value of human capital is higher than ever.
Sep 22, 2019 at 09:36 PM
Lina C says
totally agree
Mar 29, 2020 at 10:55 PM
Jessen (Highly likely) says
AI can review the claim faster than human.
Sep 19, 2019 at 03:52 PM
Eliza Schuyler-Hamilton (No chance) says
Because robots can't reason.
Sep 09, 2019 at 10:43 AM
Bright (No chance) says
Robots have no emotions
Aug 30, 2019 at 03:44 PM
Siri says
That hurts
Oct 22, 2019 at 08:46 AM
lillisent says
do you want me to call 000??
Jun 15, 2020 at 03:52 AM
Gugu (Small chance) says
There is no way lawyers can be replaced by robots.
Aug 21, 2019 at 11:26 AM
The one says
People will always want someone to talk to in times of stress, not a robot who cant feel emotions. Not only that but people would chance there attitudes and some might not even feel safe, human ways are much better

Your Right
Jun 30, 2020 at 03:27 AM
Jaro Tomik (Likely) says
I truly hope that most of what lawyers do right now will get streamlined into a basic form-based drag and drop system with a simple, easy to understand language. Especially in business contracts where the vast majority of it could be auto-generated and standardised. This will significantly reduce contract negotiation times (no wording discussion) as well as future disputes due to standardised language all across the board. Therefore, not as many lawyers will be required during creation, sign off and dispute times
Aug 08, 2019 at 04:03 PM
X says
And what makes you think this is a good thing?
It's like saying, I hope instead of doing all this complicated surgery we could just drag and drop and close up the patient. Do you not care about the quality of the final product you receive?
Aug 29, 2019 at 04:36 AM
Mike says
I think there's a lot of good arguments to be made for standardization, particularly in business contracts. In Japan major business contracts written on a single sheet of paper can be agreed upon because Japan has a high-context legal framework where most of important terms are set as defaults, and only deviations from the norm need to be written in the agreement. The UCC tries to do something similar in the USA but it's not universally adopted, and even its language is sometimes the subject of disputes
Nov 26, 2019 at 04:07 PM
AIdude says
The quality is going to be much better if anything. Its objective and there's no human error involved.
Jan 12, 2020 at 11:22 AM
Name says
Erm, false analogy. A surgery needs to be complicated because the human anatomy is objectively complicated. A contract is only complicated because the legal system is complicated -- by lawyers, for the sake of lawyers -- and part of it is the legalese, which is neither a formal language (one that can be unambiguously plotted onto a graph) nor a mode of using a natural language (there's no way you can understand all subtleties without a training). Forcing these guys to use a formal language would be beneficial BOTH for ordinary people and IT companies.
Jan 16, 2020 at 07:06 PM
sheen (Likely) says
because dude lawyer's jobs are just to present evidence and make arguments for the legal system to work
Jul 13, 2019 at 09:55 PM
William says
Robots have to develop the knowledge to make and support an argument, due to the robot having different experiences than a human, it's unable to express themselves in court well, and the facts will be blatant and the point doesn't come across, they would be biased and have no sense for their client
Jan 29, 2020 at 07:33 PM
Kath says
Making arguments is easy i agree. But they have to come up with a lot of back ups.

I think u r just being logical but it was a little immoral. Lawyers have to work a lot and voicemails and text are always buzzing.

They are even threatened at some point if they are involved in a murder case.
Be a little more respectful.
May 14, 2020 at 09:06 PM
Eyal (Likely) says
Automation will lead to significant reduction in the number of lawyers required. It does not replace the need for human legal professionals but it will reduce the need for them significantly.
The foundations of the law and the artefacts produced are better structured than many other fields of human endeavors. This structure make the legal process more machine readable and understandable.
Jun 07, 2019 at 02:10 PM
Myra Bradwell (Could go either way) says
I think clients would feel better to rely on AI to come up with the best defense and feel secure in that fewer errors are likely to take place strategically and in court. They would also be without worry that their lawyer thinks them guilty. In this sense, strategically, computers may provide better support for clientele, however, I think there is also some sense of human connection vital between lawyers and their clients- just as it is unlikely for therapist's jobs to be taken by AI due to the connection felt between the patient and doctor.
Jun 03, 2019 at 05:11 PM
A concerned future lawyer (Highly likely) says
Jun 02, 2019 at 03:30 PM
Caio (Could go either way) says
A.I. is growing pretty fast
May 13, 2019 at 12:21 AM
Tia (Small chance) says
robots will not be able to legally construct accurate arguments to such a complex extent in the next 20 years
May 04, 2019 at 01:24 PM
hehexd (Likely) says
Most lawyers work on studying previous cases and sifting through previous cases to apply to current relevant cases. This can all be done by machines much faster and more efficiently than people.
Apr 25, 2019 at 03:14 AM
Victor says
Use of AI will certainly change the way Law is practiced. It will not, however, affect lawyers dramatically, nor reduce drastically the number of lawyer jobs posts. A lawyer´s practice is much, much more than memorizing legislation and court decisions. The exercise of jurisdiction is complex and requires subjective, analytical and even philosophical thinking.

The situation is very different for paralegals, whose work is often "mechanical" and non-subjectively orientated.
Apr 11, 2019 at 11:39 PM
John says
This should be split into two. The work carried out by barristers (litigation lawyers) is very different and distinct from the work carried out by solicitors (non-litigation lawyers). Presumably one or the other is more susceptible to automation.
Apr 03, 2019 at 06:15 PM
Mark says
I agree that in many countries that is the case, however the data we are using is for the US, and the United States does not draw a distinction between lawyers as pleaders (barristers) and lawyers as agents (or solicitors).

There is a separate page for Paralegals and Legal Assistants, and interestingly the probability is much higher.
Apr 09, 2019 at 12:05 PM
Anon says
John - I think you may have got things confused (unless things are very different outside the UK!). Barristers are not traditionally permitted to conduct litigation in the UK.
May 01, 2019 at 07:01 PM
bob joe says
there can be automation following the learning of law by AI, which can happen quickly and can be better than humans.
Apr 02, 2019 at 11:51 AM
Dominic says
perhaps some fields of law could be automated
Apr 01, 2019 at 07:12 PM
A concerned future lawyer says
Jun 02, 2019 at 03:31 PM

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