On November 17, 2023, the State Bar of California’s Standing Committee on Professional Responsibility and Conduct released practical guidance for legal professionals navigating the use of generative AI in their practice.
Emphasizing the need for caution and diligence, the guidance underscores that while generative AI can enhance efficiency, it should not replace a lawyer’s professional judgment. Lawyers must exercise critical analysis and ensure accuracy, guarding against potential biases and errors in AI-generated outputs.
Additionally, it highlights the importance of clear communication with clients regarding the use, benefits, and risks associated with generative AI. Firms are urged to establish policies, provide adequate training, and monitor AI usage to align with professional responsibilities.
Specifically outlined in this guidance are key principles essential for lawyers to uphold their ethical obligations when utilizing generative AI. Addressing concerns such as confidentiality, competence, compliance with the law, supervision, communication with clients, billing practices, and ethical considerations in court submissions, the guidance provides a comprehensive framework.
Access to the full guidance is available here.