Solicitors make government list of jobs ‘most exposed’ to AI

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By Rhys Duncan on


Management consultants top table; sports players and roofers least exposed

Solicitors may wish to consider a dynamic career change to roofing, plastering, or window cleaning according to new predictions on the impact of artificial intelligence (AI).

The latest report, published by the Department for Education, lists solicitors as the 12th most exposed occupation to the impacts of AI. Other “legal professionals” came in higher, taking 9th position.

Topping the table are management consultants and business analysts, financial managers, accountants, and psychologists.

For those now panicking and looking to jump ship, fear not, the report also ranks the occupations least likely to be impacted. Claiming pole position here are sports players, with roofers and elementary construction occupations taking the second and third spots.

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Also on this list are plasterers, cleaners, floorers, launderers, and window cleaners.

Analysing the data, the report goes on to note how: “The occupations least exposed to AI and LLM include many of the same areas, including more manual work that is technically difficult, in unpredictable environments, and with lower wages (reducing the incentive to automate) — with the exception of sports players.”

However, it may not be time to jump into an AI-proof lifeboat just yet. “The exposure score is based on several assumptions including the abilities considered important for a job at a given point in time so rankings should be interpreted with caution, however the themes highlighted by the analysis are expected to continue”.



AI is equivalent to a sh1tty paralegal. I’m not worried.


After my architect let me down demanding more money, I turned to AI, which helped me successfully get a building warrant permit here in Scotland 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿. And considering that English is not my first language, I was blown away! Cost me 0.

No doubt that some jobs are doomed unless people skill up in LLM programming. Sorry to say but soon paralegals may be replaced by AI agents if they don’t learn the tech. Adapt or lose your livelihood.

Archibald O'Pomposity

You’re not worried because your thinking about the topic is a perfect storm of ignorance, lack of imagination and lack of foresight. A computer program that can approximate a shitty paralegal is both awe-inspiring and (if you are a lawyer) deeply unsettling. If you cannot connect the trajectory that brings us to a low-level paralegal with the trajectory that will bring us to high-level legal acumen, then you will – quite rightly – be stacking shelves in Tesco within the next five years.

It’s okay to be vulnerable

Sounds like you’re worried

Feel the AGI

“Current” AI


Wow a litigator with real foresight about how things may develop in the future!

Who replaced the fax machine?

Wildly inaccurate and misleading?

Jobs likely to be impacted – of course legal work is likely to be impacted – tons of legal tasks are already AI assisted (crappy trainee tasks) but there’s no obvious mention here of AI replacing lawyers. Same goes for Accountancy (and the big 4) are leading the AI charge so it’s unlikely they are developing tech to replace themselves but rather to help their businesses become more efficient.

In fact, at the other end of the spectrum – the stuff that is low skilled – that’s where you need to worry – and that’s where you have the highest risks of whole jobs (manual unskilled labour) being replaced not necessarily by AI but but some form of automation tech.

Misleading conclusions / headlines in that report I’d say..

The Bar is doomed

Barristers are the most exposed. They do little client care – hardly any use of any people skills (which are surgically removed from barristers on qualification anyway) – and the Bar’s expertise and specialism is the easiest thing for AI to replicate, and improve on.

No doubt it’ll be many years before machines are allowed to deliver submissions in court but, when they can, AI speech will do a better job, with suitably persuasive accents and delivery. Including better handling of judicial interventions.

Come to that, judges will be replaced. There’ll be a judicial AI bot clarifying points made by a litigant’s AI bot.

Assuming juries are here to stay, I’m sure they’d rather listen to a Richard Burton or Judi Dench or Michelle Pfeiffer or Morgan Freeman sound-a-like AI bot, rather than hear from some crusty old hack counsel who’s shambled in from the local chambers.

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I think that it is important to consider how AI could help the legal sector in reducing the workload of solicitors with admin tasks. I also see how it could save money by reducing the number of billable hours that law firms charge clients with, which is something that clients would want.

I also recently came across a news story that a Big Four firm developed an AI tech that allows the firm to advise clients on whether a certain investment is worth it or not. This is something that could potentially be appealing to law firms but I think that we are not that close to the time where an AI system could work independently to provide advice. It still needs to be operated by qualified individuals because it might be the case that due to an error on an acquisition proposal, the advice provided by the AI is inaccurate. In addition whether it is not familiar with certain business language and terms, it might also provide inaccurate solutions.


Sentencing in the criminal courts will be next.

It’s almost that way already with the SGC Guidelines.

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