Lex Machina: Product Review



Not long ago, lawyers were required to rely on word of mouth and information from their partners or associates to know how a judge tends to rule on particular matters or to assess the experience of opposing counsel in a case. This approach was unreliable and time-consuming, particularly when engaging with a new client or getting involved with new litigation.

Lex Machina has changed this status quo by introducing a Legal Analytics platform to help legal professionals understand and anticipate how different players in the legal system are likely to behave in specific cases. Lex Machina’s Legal Analytics platform aggregates all of the data from documents that are filed on court dockets, utilizing a unique combination of artificial intelligence and human legal expert review to clean and structure the litigation data and provide data-driven insights that can be invaluable to attorneys. The platform ensures that lawyers are well-prepared, and offers relevant insights that help legal professionals derive actionable information.

“We provide a Legal Analytics platform that serves as a tool for lawyers to understand and predict what the different players of the legal system are going to do and how they’re going to behave in different cases,” said Joerg Rathenberg, Chief Marketing Officer.

Comprehensive Coverage: Judges, Counsel, and Involved Parties

As a critical tool for legal practice, Lex Machina’s Legal Analytics features both federal and state analytics that address a broad range of practice areas. The company is also on the verge of launching a new module that will provide analytics on litigation in appellate courts. Lex Machina’s Legal Analytics platform collectively provides access to a large and comprehensive dataset of over six million cases with over 18 practice areas in federal district court and more than 25 state courts, all of which add up to a well-defined analytics solution within the legal space.

"We provide a legal analytics platform that serves as a tool for lawyers to understand and predict what the different players of the legal system are going to do and how they’re going to behave in varied cases"

“If a lawyer is analyzing, for example, the litigation behavior of a large company, our platform allows them to identify the practice area with the highest number of open cases, see which lawyers represented t h e m in these cases, review the outcomes, and find potential opportunities for pitching,” elaborates Gloria Huang, Legal Content Associate. Lawyers can explore counsel analytics that provides insights to craft litigation strategies based on historical data bolstered by Lex Machina’s Legal Analytics, in order to understand their opposing counsel’s litigation history and success rates in past cases. “There is a clear advantage in knowing your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses, not just in the courtroom, but also when creating pitches to win new clients,” adds Rathenberg. In addition to providing such critical insights for legal proceedings, Lex Machine upholds the idea of offering convenient and accessible support to its customers. The platform is offered on a subscription model, without the need for any software installation or deployment.
The company has also nurtured a knowledgeable team of support staff to train lawyers and other legal participants in navigating the Legal Analytics platform and maximizing its benefits. Safe to say, Lex Machina paints a complete picture of litigation, providing users a holistic view of critical information.

Exceptional Data Accuracy

While other players in the legal space often use PACER (Public Access Court Electronic Records) data at face value and present it to customers without resolving potential underlying data inaccuracies, Lex Machina has implemented a mix of technology and human review, setting itself apart from other vendors. Lex Machina utilizes cutting-edge technology that reads and analyzes all the documents attached to cases filed on PACER. Case in point, Lex Machina’s Attorney Data Engine scans the underlying documents to clean the data of any errors such as misspelt names of law firms or lawyers who are misattributed to cases or firms. Lex Machina analyzes the documents and assembles a new dataset out of all the unstructured information, turning it into actionable insights. The company refreshes its data approximately every 24 hours, keeping users updated with the latest updates and recent developments.

Lex Machina is the only organization to combine machine learning and natural language processing with human legal expert review to truly understand what a legal document contains. The company has appointed a team of lawyers for each practice area who review cases flagged by the AI tool. The company’s Attorney Data Engine, coupled with its Signature Block Analyzer, helps reviewers ensure the factual accuracy and relevance of information by processing docket text and blocks of individual case documents to enhance the results. This function allows users to gain granular insights that could not be uncovered previously. Additionally, as the primary purpose of data sources such as PACER is not for data and analytics but rather for creating court records, PACER only assigns each case to one practice area, even though cases frequently involve claims in multiple practice areas. Lex Machina uses its unique technology to ensure that every case is categorized under every single practice area that it falls under.


 
Outcome-driven Analytics

Good data can save lawyers from drawing the wrong conclusions or advocating for strategies to their clients that might lead to failure. One strong example is Lex Machina’s Outcome Analytics, which consist of case resolutions, damages, findings, and remedies. This kind of coverage is not featured by other analytics providers within this space, who often fall short in depicting the entire picture for customers. Most analytics solutions do not have the necessary capabilities to extract all of the information available in the underlying case documents. In contrast, Lex Machina provides detailed insights on whether a case was resolved in favor of the claimant or the claim defendant, whether it was resolved by likely settlement or procedural resolution, what damages were incurred, how the judge ruled on specific findings, and more. Users can easily visualize the entire breakdown of all the information at a glance. The platform also features Motion Metrics, a tool that assesses the rate of success for specific types of motions filed by lawyers before a judge.
Case List Analyzer

Lex Machina clearly prioritizes “ease of use”. The platform’s flexibility enables users to customize the results of their analysis in a way that’s most pertinent to their case. For instance, the Case List Analyzer tool within the platform allows lawyers to quickly build a list of similar cases. Users can select from a wide range of different criteria to refine their case selection by using dates, case resolutions, courts, judges, lawyers, or parties, to arrive at a list that is most relevant to the matter at hand. The Case List Analyzer is customizable to show exactly the data a user is looking for, across all relevant cases.

Filters and Tags

One of the strengths of the platform is the vast number of tags and filters that a user can apply to narrow down a case list. Lex Machina offers over 100 practice-specific criteria that can be applied. Users can also filter by case timing, case resolutions, damages, findings, and remedies. For example, a lawyer can select all contracts cases before a specific judge and then filter this case list to show only Jury Trials for cases with a Breach of Contract.


There is a clear advantage in knowing your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses, not just in the courtroom, but also when creating pitches to win new clients

Alerts

The Alerts feature of the platform notifies users of any new development in a particular set of cases and on any point of interest. They can use alerts to follow a particular judge, a party, or specific keywords. Alerts will help lawyers to remain up-todate on their matters.

Sharing Results

The data from an analysis can be extracted into Excel sheets, PDF files, or be represented in graphical format. One very powerful feature is that users can create live links to their analysis, which they can send to their clients or colleagues. The shared links will show the recipient exactly what was represented on the shared page, even if they don’t have access to Lex Machina. For those recipients who do have access to the tool, the link can serve as a starting point for an entirely new analysis.



Lex Machina’s Legal Analytics platform offers a data-driven perspective into the litigation space, enabling legal professionals to address a multitude of requirements as they arise and the success of Lex Machina speaks for itself. Lex Machina aspires to build on this success and provide support for various integrations through APIs to access the underlying data directly and derive valuable insights. Undoubtedly, the potential for such crucial tools is vast within the legal profession, and Lex Machina is geared to continue its path of innovation through its products and services.

Vendor Viewpoints

Company
Lex Machina

Headquarters
Menlo Park, CA

Management
Karl Harris, CEO

Description
Lex Machina helps lawyers anticipate potential litigation outcomes with data-driven insights on case timing, resolutions, damages, remedies, and findings, in order to land more clients and win more cases. Its Legal Analytics platform uses a unique combination of machine learning, natural language processing, and technology-assisted human review to produce strategic insights on the litigation behavior of judges, attorneys, law firms, parties, and more, using millions of pages of underlying litigation information.

Lex Machina