8 April 2024 / Cameron W. Deane

How Will AI Effect the Subrogation Industry?

Attorney Cameron Deane recently attended the National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) 2024 Spring Conference, held at the luxurious Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania. He’s now sharing his takeaways below!

This was my first NASP conference after joining the industry a couple years ago, and I was delighted to meet other members and share our experiences in the world of subrogation. The theme of this year’s conference was “Building for the Future” and after attending several sessions and speaking with other members, it seems the future is much closer than we think.

As an attorney representing carriers in their subrogation claims, my biggest takeaways from this conference relate to the impact that artificial intelligence (AI) will have on the subrogation field and the legal industry in general. The keynote speaker, Dr. Peter Angeline, kicked off the conference with his presentation titled Blending Brains and Bots: Enhancing Productivity in the AI Era. I found his presentation fascinating and of course, my mind began to race, thinking of all the benefits AI could provide myself in my legal practice in the near future. Dr. Angeline discussed the general fear many people express over AI, but suggested such fear is a result of misunderstanding what AI actually is. He then explained how generative AI, such as ChatGPT and other services built using OpenAI, actually function and their potential uses for both carriers and attorneys alike. Generative AI can be thought of as a tool that can create similar to what a human can, such as writing papers or creating visual art. These tools work by creating the model that completes the generative function, then training the model by feeding it data, such as other papers, photos, etc. After sufficient training, a user can then give the model prompts, such as “read this deposition transcript and write a summary of how this witness describes the auto accident.” The Generative AI tool will then do the work for you, providing a summary of the transcript you feed it. 

When most people think of AI, they likely think of movies such as iRobot, starring Will Smith, in which an army of sentient robots begin to take over the human race. Likewise, the Terminator series is what comes to my mind, in which a similar takeover occurs by the “machines.” However, Dr. Angeline was clear in explaining that AI in our reality is not the AI of action movies past, but rather, exists more like a personal assistant that can get through a lot of the grunt work for you on a day-to-day basis. Dr. Angeline also addressed the concern of AI taking jobs away from people in all sorts of industries. He predicted that it won’t be AI that replaces humans, but rather, humans that use AI will replace humans that don’t. 

I also attended a session in which Parrot founder Eric Baum, attorney Joe Rich of Cozen O’Connor, and attorney Michael Stevens of Derrevere, Stevens, Black & Cozad presented AI in Subrogation: Harnessing Potential and Recognizing Challenges and Limitations focused on the use of AI in the context of litigating subrogation claims. The three-member panel was more specific about using generative AI for things such as writing the first draft of a brief for a motion or for summarizing discovery received from your adversary. This session turned into a very interesting Q&A, in which attorneys and carriers alike asked about the security, confidentiality, and trustworthiness of such tools. In response, the panel advised all who use such tools to ensure they use tools specifically marketed for their industries. For example, using ChatGPT, a freely available service, was not recommended, as uploading documents to ChatGPT puts the information on those documents out into an unsecure and accessible database. Rather, this panel was recommending the use of “closed systems”, which, in essence, refers to a tool that utilizes the same technology as ChatGPT, but any information you provide it does not go beyond your system. Rather, the application comes to you, so to speak. The use of these closed system tools will protect against most security and confidentiality concerns. 

This session also gave rise to several questions from insurance carriers, who expressed concerns about their lawyers using such tools and getting into trouble with the court or their adversaries. Everyone was aware of the horror story in which an attorney submitted a brief to the court that was written by ChatGPT, in which the AI-written brief cited case law that did not actually exist. In response, the panel noted something that is an unfortunate reality of the legal industry: lazy attorneys who cut corners and fail to double-check the case law in their AI brief are the same attorneys that would cut corners and find themselves in trouble without AI. Good lawyers, on the other hand, will be using this for what it is, a tool to supplement their work, not a replacement of their work. 

Equating the influx of AI technology to that of the fax machine, then internet and email communication, it is easy to see how all sorts of industries will change in the coming years as they had done so decades prior, and it is the firms and people that use this new technology that will gain an advantage over their competitors that are hesitant to adapt.
Our team is constantly monitoring these changes to the industry. If you have any questions or would like to learn more about our subrogation solutions, connect with Cameron at any time. 

This blog is not a solicitation for business and it is not intended to constitute legal advice on specific matters, create an attorney-client relationship or be legally binding in any way.

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