Automated contract analysis and analytical tools are getting increasingly sophisticated, making transactional work more efficient and less lawyers centric.
Thomson Reuters today announced the launch of HighQ Contract Analysis. The product is a contract review and analysis tool that uses machine learning to answer specific questions from legal professionals and then spit out an easy-to-read report. The tool lets you ask such things as “What are the landlord’s maintenance obligations ?” or “Is there a mutual right to break?”
The announcement came as part of the first-ever Thomson Reuters Legal SYNERGY conference, a virtual event that includes product sessions, continuing legal education, and networking.
Here’s how it works: a contract is first downloaded into the HighQ AI Hub. The contract is then classified, and essential facts like parties, deal value, language, and jurisdiction are identified. The new HighQ Contract Analysis pre-trained models can then automatically extract and retrieve defined terms and definitions from within the agreement, divide the document into text snippets, evaluate every snippet against the review questions, and returns text that answers the questions. Users can then assess the answers, comment, annotate and assign risks in the document.
HighQ Contract Analysis also allows users to compare contracts to an identified standard
HighQ Contract Analysis also allows users to compare contracts to an identified standard, enabling reviewers to quickly identify non-standard terms, deviations, and additional risks.
“A typical use case would be for a buyer assessing a purchase of an office block, based in part on a review of all the contracts associated with the properties being purchased,” said Rawia Ashraf, vice president of Legal Practice and Productivity at Thomson Reuters. “The buyer needs to identify key risks, such as how much income is generated by these properties, what properties are likely to be vacant, and who is liable for things such as insurance and repair.”
HighQ Contract Analysis is built around legal domains, beginning with real estate leases and sales and services agreements and soon extending to other areas, including intellectual property agreements and employment agreements. It integrates with HighQ, the company’s collaboration, and workflow automation platform.
Although I am not a transaction lawyer, I have written several times about the increasing sophistication of the contract analysis and analytical tools offered. The Thomson Reuters announcement adds yet another one which I think is a good thing.
It’s no secret that contract review is critical and time-consuming, and a source of real pain for legal departments
It’s no secret that contract review is critical and time-consuming, and a source of real pain for legal departments. So tools like HighQ Contract Analysis can make in-house departments much more efficient and cost effective.
Other tools offered by Thomson Reuters competitor include LexisNexis’ Survey of Commercial Lease Terms which is based on private data about commercial leases obtained from law firms and businesses. According to LexisNexis, the Survey provides up-to-date intelligence about the commercial leasing market and gives a clear view of market standards, standard lease terms, and trends.
Other tools like contract automation programs offered by Blackboiler and Avvoka about which I previously posted, also can reduce the time lawyers need to spend on contract matters. All of these products are good news for business, maybe not so good news for lawyers.