Why Don’t We Replace Judges With AI?

By |2018-12-07T20:43:38-05:00May 26th, 2017|

Why Don't We Replace Judges With AIIt’s inescapable. Everyone on the planet has some kind of bias. And anyone who has gone to court has seen this bias up close. Some judges hate men. Some hate women. Some hate poor people and some hate the rich. Researchers have studied psychological filters for decades, and we understand that people see all events through a cloud of their past experiences, moods, desires, and overall natures.

In law enforcement, we see the events that take place through body cameras and cell phones as police officers sometimes have to use force to defuse a situation which they perceive at that moment as a threat to themselves or others.

As a result of past police and government actions in the minority communities, they watch the police through their own filters of the police looking to cause them and their communities harm.

Clearly, we all carry these filters, acting and reacting to situations based on our experiences and beliefs. That means it’s all but impossible to find someone who can be completely logical and objective.

Back in 1987, the hit movie Robocop gave us the first glimmer of how artificial intelligence (AI) could be used by the police to apprehend and enforce the law.

We don’t have the technology to use for law enforcement, and for that, we will still need people. But we have enough of a body of case law and statutory law to allow people to go to court and be treated decently with respect, dignity, and to have the law applied fairly and blindly, as Lady Justice has always portrayed.

Recently, I had the chance to watch a judge take a car away from a woman, even though she was paying for it.  Even though her boss offered to pay her a stipend to use it for work.  Even though her husband had declared bankruptcy and his credit had already been destroyed, so there was no credit risk.  The judge even refused to force the husband to pay his child support so his wife would have money for a car.  My involvement in the case only lasted for a week, but it was long enough to see the bias.  Long enough to see that this judge believed bullying is better than treating someone with respect and dignity, and using logic to apply the law fairly.

An AI legal system wouldn’t bully, wouldn’t take its biases out on the defenseless. It can avoid humanity’s shortcomings and treat people with decency and fairness.

Last year, Sam Ransbotham wrote an article for MIT Sloan Management Review titled “Can Artificial Intelligence Replace Executive Decision Making?.” He wanted to explore whether executives who are faced with many questions that require greater insight could be replaced with an AI system to handle it all. He concluded they could not, in part because there is insufficient information for the system to draw on.

However, we have hundreds of years of case law precedent, statutory analysis, and the plain wording of statutes that we would allow us to develop an AI system to fairly apply the law. With this kind of system, maybe people can be treated better, more efficiently, and more logically without human judges. The human judges can still review decisions on the appellate level, but maybe at least on the trial level, AI can play a role in changing our judicial system.

In the meantime, if you still need a human lawyer to deal with the all-too-human legal system, Levoritz Law Group is made up of some of the best humans to handle your business issues, estate planning, asset protection, family and divorce issues, and criminal defense. For more information, or to talk with an attorney, please call us at (718) 942-4004.

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