Artificial intelligence will bring changes to many professions, including law. But he also has victims who trust his abilities too much.
Among them is Zachariah Crabill, who was an overwhelmed junior lawyer at a Colorado Springs law firm when he gave in to the temptation to use ChatGPT in May.
The AI chatbot helped him draft a motion in seconds, saving him hours of work, local radio station KRDO reported. reported in June. But after filing the document in a Colorado court, he realized something was wrong: Several lawsuit citations generated by ChatGPT were fabricated.
OpenAI’s ChatGPT is notorious for being wrong, and in this case it simply created cases out of thin air that looked convincing. Crabill did not verify that the cases were real before submitting his work.
Crabill admitted his mistake to the judge, who reported him to the state office, and in July the young attorney was fired from his job at Baker Law Group.
In his statement to the court acknowledging his error, Crabill wrote“I felt my lack of experience in legal research and writing and therefore my effectiveness in this regard could be increased exponentially for the benefit of my clients by speeding up the tedious research part of writing. »
Crabill is not the only lawyer who has too much faith in ChatGPT. In June, two lawyers were reprimanded and fined $5,000 by a New York federal judge for submitting a legal brief also citing nonexistent cases.
In punishments v. Steven A. Schwartz and Peter LoDuca of Levidow, Levidow & Oberman, the judge wrote: “Technological advances are commonplace, and there is nothing fundamentally inappropriate about the use of an artificial intelligence tool reliable for assistance. But existing rules impose a monitoring role on lawyers to ensure the accuracy of their files.
“I didn’t understand that ChatGPT could make records,” Schwartz told the judge.
But Crabill, for one, isn’t giving up on AI tools, despite the traumatic experience.
In a Washington Post piece Published Thursday, Crabill said he would likely use AI tools designed specifically for lawyers to help with his writing and research.
He added: “There is no point in being an opponent or being against something that will invariably become the way of the future. »