A new legal tech startup, Legal Lens, will protect companies, state entities, and individuals from inflated legal fees. The startup is able to reduce legal fees by as much as 60% but say that 10% is about average.
The founders, Catherine-Jane Paulse and Yusha Davidson, both admitted attorneys, recognised that legal invoices often reflected billing practices and errors that resulted in unfair, high legal fees.
“The recent discussion paper by the South African Law Reform Commission regarding its investigation into legal fees also confirms that improper and unethical billing is a reality in South Africa,” Paulse says.
Davidson explains, “We realised that it’s awkward and difficult reviewing legal invoices, as clients fear disrupting the close relationship they have with their lawyers and may not have the knowledge needed to dispute a legal invoice. It’s time consuming. So, we developed a tech solution to review legal invoices and reduce legal fees.”
All clients need do is send the legal invoices to Legal Lens as well as any correspondence regarding fee arrangements and their letter of engagement with the lawyer.
Using experienced attorneys, optical character recognition and machine learning, Legal Lens digitally reviews the legal invoices to identify areas for potential savings. Legal Lens then engages with the customer’s lawyer regarding the fees in dispute.
All engagements are professionally handled to ensure that the relationship between the customer and the lawyer is maintained. After the legal invoice has been renegotiated and revised, Legal Lens obtains a new invoice from the legal firm that reflects the reduced amount to be paid.
Clients are charged 17.5% (including VAT) of the amount saved. If there are no savings, Legal Lens does not charge.
Legal Lens has entered into discussions with the Law Society of South Africa (LSSA), for the LSSA to recommend the offering. The LSSA has stated that this innovative solution has the potential to protect the interests of the public.
Legal Lens is currently in discussion with some of the major banks and insurance companies to offer its service, but offers its services to any company, state entity, or individual who would like their legal bills reviewed.
For more information on this disruptive legal tech solution which is saving money on legal fees, visit www.legallens.co.za.