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New UnitedLex Survey Reveals 92% of In-house Legal Teams and 84% of Law Firms are Prioritizing Litigation Modernization Efforts  


Survey of 200+ litigators shows data and AI, performance metrics, and operational governance, are driving factors in litigation management

UnitedLex, a leading data and professional services company specializing in litigation, intellectual property, contracts, compliance, and legal operations, releases the first of an annual series of reports surveying senior litigation professionals, Mandate to Modernize: A Deep Dive into Priorities for Litigators in 2024. Driven by a confluence of rising litigation complexity and growing legal workloads, today’s litigation climate is putting more pressure on both law firms and in-house legal teams to modernize their approach to litigation tasks including resourcing. 

In March of 2024, UnitedLex commissioned Pensar Media, a research firm specializing in legal services, to survey more than 200 senior litigation professionals from Am Law 200 law firms and global corporations with revenue over $2 billion on the trends driving the evolution of a modern litigation function and related priorities, strategies and tactics. The survey results point to dedicated efforts to meet modernization mandates by leveraging technology and AI workflows to increase efficiency and outsourcing more “run the business” litigation tasks to focus more on higher-value legal priorities. 

“There’s an increasing trend of CFOs saying legal needs to operate like the rest of the business,” said Aaron Crews, chief product and innovation officer at UnitedLex. “GCs are being asked by their leadership to figure out how to incorporate technology and leverage AI to do things differently. Many say they are being pushed to do this, and the push is coming from above.” 

Litigation professionals from organizations including Sidley Austin, K&L Gates, King & Spalding, Walgreens, and Deutsche Bank provide perspectives on the survey data and analysis throughout the report.   

Key findings from the report include: 

  • 39% of in-house litigators and 21% of law firms are accessing specialized expertise, specifically in AI tools and workflows through their ALSPs rather than building the tools themselves. 
  • In addition to document review as an AI/genAI use case for 58% of both law firms and in-house teams, both groups also use or plan to use these tools for witness/deposition preparation (48% and 52%, respectively) and privilege logging (45% and 50%). 
  • 64% of in-house respondents said the most important metric for measuring modernization is tracking budget against spend, while law firm respondents said billable hours (68%) and profit per partner (56%) are the most important metrics. 

The full report offers a detailed look at the challenges and opportunities of legal modernization, as well as insights from numerous industry leaders. Download a complimentary copy of the report at: Mandate to Modernize: A Deep Dive into Key Priorities, Strategies, and Metrics | UnitedLex

About UnitedLex 

UnitedLex is a data and professional services company delivering outcomes that create value for high-performing law firms and corporate legal departments in the areas of digital litigation, intellectual property, contracts, compliance, and legal operations. Founded in 2006 with a mission to push the boundaries of legal innovation, we provide solutions that enable measurable performance improvement, risk mitigation, revenue gain, cost reduction, and digital business synergy. Our team of 3,000+ legal, data, and technology professionals supports our clients from operational centers around the world. 


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Susan Hammann 
Director of Strategic Communications 


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Survey Report - Priorities for Litigators in 2024