An Update on LegalSifter

Last April I told you in this post that I had become an advisor to LegalSifter, the company that’s developing software to help you review the other side’s draft contracts.

What do I have to announce now? Well, nothing in particular. I’m simply continuing to do my part. In addition to doing consulting work, and roaming around giving seminars, and hacking away at my efforts article, I’m devoting a serious amount of time to developing LegalSifter’s “sifters,” the pieces of software that sniff out a particular issue.

Have we reached a particular milestone? No. Although we’re a lot farther along than we were when I joined, the nature of the task is such that there’s no end in sight. But we have a substantial inventory of sifters. We keep adding additional sifters that look for serious issues in a targeted way. And we keep making the product easier to use and more versatile.

I can’t say I understand much about the technology, but I’ve seen the results. And I’m satisfied with the substantive expertise built into our sifters. That’s just as well, because as I described in this post, I’m providing a lot of it, with plenty of input from the data-science side of the operation. What I said in that post still applies:

LegalSifter has been transparent about who provides their contracts expertise. Plenty of other companies are sniffing around this space. Who provides their contracts expertise? I don’t know.

That poses two problems. First, whoever is advising them might not in fact have the necessary expertise. After all, it’s not as if there are a lot of contract-language specialists out there.

And second, even if they have suitable experts toiling away behind the scenes, that’s different from being seen to have the necessary expertise. Relying on someone else to tell you how to handle contract language requires a leap of faith. My years of writing, speaking, and teaching have allowed me to refine my work, but they’ve also kept me in the public eye, in a low-key way. With me, people know what they’re getting. I hope that makes it easier for them to make the leap to LegalSifter.

If a lot of your contracts process consists of reviewing the other side’s drafts, I think you’d find LegalSifter interesting. If you’d like to know more, you’re welcome to contact me. Or you could click on the banner ad to the right of this post.

About the author

Ken Adams is the leading authority on how to say clearly whatever you want to say in a contract. He’s author of A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting, and he offers online and in-person training around the world. He’s also chief content officer of LegalSifter, Inc., a company that combines artificial intelligence and expertise to assist with review of contracts.