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Singapore’s Legal Technology Platform Initiative

In support of LegalTech Adoption in the nation’s legal industry, Singapore’s Ministry of Law (MinLaw) has recently launched its Legal Technology Platform Initiative (“LTPI”). The Legal Technology Platform, LTPI Funding Programme, and Industry Engagement Initiatives are all part of the efforts to assist the legal sector in its digital transformation.

The Legal Technology Platform (LTP), a crucial element of the LTPI, aims to assist law firms, particularly small and medium law practises SMPs), that encounter resource limitation in locating, acquiring, implementing, and maintaining LegalTech solutions. Key Features of LTP are:

  • Document management and collaboration
  • Assign tasks and track deadlines
  • Customisable matter templates
  • Secure communication
  • Integration with select practice management systems (PMS), document management systems (DMS) and other LegalTech tools
  • Collaborating on documents via App

The LTP is a matter management and collaboration platform that may be used alone or in conjunction with other LegalTech applications. It is built around legal procedures. Lawyers can monitor, track, and manage both the substantive (such as document drafting, legal research, team discussions, and client instructions) and administrative (such as time spent and billing information) parts of their issues through the LTP. This streamlines routine tasks and gives attorneys more time to concentrate on important issues.

The LTP relates to LegalTech technologies that Singapore law firms are already accustomed to using, including communication tools, document management systems, and practice management systems. If a firm has access to these tools, it can use the LTP to access the core functionality, eliminating the need to switch between separate platforms. Other law firms and in-house counsel teams in Singapore can implement the LTP even though the SMPs are its main target market.

The legal sector has contributed significantly to the co-development of the LTP by MinLaw (with assistance from GovTech) and its LTP technology partner. Over 100 lawyers from various practice areas were consulted during the development process to determine characteristics that Singapore law firms would find valuable in the LTP.

Moreover, with assistance from Enterprise Singapore and the Infocomm Media Development Authority, MinLaw will give financial support to enable Singapore law firms, particularly the SMPs, to cover the upfront costs of adopting the LTP and the LegalTech tools associated with it.

When they use the LTP and the associated LegalTech tools, successful applicants may get funding support of up to 70 per cent through the Productivity Solutions Grant (PSG) for up to two years. In comparison, the Tech Start for Law (2017) and Tech-celerate for Law (2019) programmes received financing support for only one year. This improvement was implemented in response to suggestions from legal firms.

Without financing support, the LTP has a monthly subscription fee of $69 per user. Eligible law firms will only be required to pay $21 per user per month with financing help. As a result, implementing LTP would be substantially less expensive.

To test the LTP, solicit input on it, help it get better, and promote acceptance of the LTP, MinLaw established the Industry Engagement and Advisory Group (IEAG). Ten lawyers, mostly from SMPs and representing a variety of practice areas, make up the IEAG now.

To inform attorneys more fully about the LTPI, MinLaw will also collaborate with the Law Society of Singapore to organise several outreach and training programmes. In addition, the LTP will continue to be upgraded with new features and better connectivity to online platforms used often by attorneys and law firms, like eLitigation and LawNet.

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