‘Jolly useful’: Court of Appeal judge’s verdict on ChatGPT

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By Rhys Duncan on


Helps with legal research

A Court of Appeal judge has admitted using ChatGPT to help him prepare a recent judgment.

Lord Justice Birss labelled the AI programme “jolly useful”, citing its “real potential” for future use within the legal sector.

In a speech held at the Law Society, and subsequently reported on by The Law Gazette, Birss LJ is quoted as saying: “I think what is of most interest is that you can ask these large language models to summarise information. It is useful and it will be used and I can tell you, I have used it.”

The Cambridge grad, and former material scientist, did, however, clarify that he only used the AI programme after researching the area of law. “I know what the answer is because I was about to write a paragraph that said that”, he told the audience.

Speaking of responsibility for the contents of the judgment, the top judge went on:

“I’m taking full personal responsibility for what I put in my judgment, I am not trying to give the responsibility to somebody else. All it did was a task which I was about to do and which I knew the answer and could recognise as being acceptable.”

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But Birss LJ isn’t the first judge to employ the AI tool. As reported by Legal Cheek, a judge in Colombia hit headlines earlier this year when he used ChatGPT to assist him in solving a dispute between a health insurance company and the guardian of an autistic child.

Elsewhere, a US judge recently issued a joint fine to two lawyers involved in a case where non-existent cases were submitted to the court after ChatGPT was used for legal research.



Even in jest, it’s pretty disgraceful and lazy that a presumably top judge and Cambridge grad uses ChatGPT for the purpose of summarising information.

Tip Top

It is a fair presumption that anyone that uses the word “top” in the Daily Mail sense, “top judge”, “top lawyer”, etc, has nothing worth saying. Your comment supports that approach.

Legal cheek please stop deleting comments

I’m sure everyone has noticed the decline in comments on the articles. Stop hiding the amount of comments. Bring back the old website!!


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