Luminance Autopilot: A Week in the News

20 November 2023 | Jaeger Glucina

Last week, I had the pleasure of returning to the Sky News studios to join Ian King live on air for a discussion about Luminance’s vision for the future of contract negotiation: Luminance Autopilot.

It came off the back of a live demonstration we recently gave to the BBC, after Luminance’s cutting-edge technology became the first AI in the world to completely automate the negotiation of a contract, without human intervention, between two opposing parties. With so much buzz around AI and calls for regulation following the UK summit, this was a great chance to remind everyone of the incredible opportunities that AI can create for society, and the importance of embracing innovation. In case you missed it, here’s a summary of the discussion that’s been headlining the news for the past week and a half.

Introducing Auto-Negotiation

Up until now, Luminance’s unique legal Large Language Model has combined analytical and generative AI to augment the work of lawyers, acting as a trusty co-pilot for over 500 organisations worldwide. Autopilot takes Luminance’s technology one step further, placing routine contract negotiations in the hands of a legally-trained AI without the need for human involvement until it's time to sign on the dotted line.

I like to compare this jump from co-pilot to Autopilot with the journey of a real-life lawyer; they undergo years of training and then the all-important practical experience working on cases and projects with clients which over time forms a deep level of expertise in the field in which they practice. It’s the same journey that Luminance’s AI has had to take, learning and honing its understanding of legal work from lawyers at the very highest level, all over the world and in many different fields, for several years. Autopilot is now ready to work on its own, although we’re starting out with simpler, routine contracts before moving on to more complex agreements, much like the rites of passage those junior lawyers take! And, of course, it’s under supervision.

You might be asking yourself what this actually looks like in practice. Well, while I chatted with Ian, viewers were able to watch a demonstration of Autopilot’s review and negotiation of a real-life NDA. This showed Luminance’s ability to read a contract, remediate areas of risk, and respond to any changes made by the counterparty’s AI. All of this is done automatically, with the AIs applying knowledge from their respective business’s previously negotiated agreements and preferred positions.

The process itself is simple: each AI conducts its auto-analysis of the contract in Word, the counterparty AI can then accept or negotiate the suggested changes, continuing until both parties are satisfied, and the contract is ready for human signature within minutes. This is compared to the 20 minutes to 2 hours a lawyer might typically spend reviewing an NDA –once they actually have time to get around to it!

Does this spell the end for lawyers?

I can already hear the naysayers asking what position this leaves lawyers in if AI is taking over contract negotiations, so let me be clear – we’re not looking to erase the legal profession. I was a practising barrister and solicitor myself at one point, so I’m firmly on the side of lawyers when it comes to their knowledge and human touch being incredibly important in many contexts. I’m also on the side of wanting to improve their everyday work and quality of life. What we’re seeking to do with Autopilot is allow AI to handle the day-to-day negotiations of routine contracts that tend to pile up and cause delays, so that human lawyers get time back in their days to focus on complex, higher-value tasks, where their creativity and critical thinking will be essential.

Taking the routine work off lawyer’s plates (the type of work they could do in their sleep!) also means that businesses across all sectors will be able to prioritise legal resource where it’s most needed. In this way, I see Luminance Autopilot representing a new, more efficient chapter in the future of legal work and one that could change the game forever.

That said, it is important to note that lawyers still have full control: they can determine how aggressively the AIs negotiate on certain positions, review a log of all changes made by the AI and always make the final decision on whether to sign the contract – this isn’t something that I see changing anytime soon.