IIT Kharagpur Develops AI-Aided Method To Automate Reading Of Legal Case Judgments

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  • The project is being supported by the Science & Engineering Research Board (SERB) of the Department of Science and Technology
  • The neural methods used by the team enables automatic learning of the features, given sufficient amount of data

Researchers at IIT Kharagpur have come out with an artificial Intelligence-aided method to automate the reading of legal case judgments. The researchers from IIT Kharagpur’s computer science and engineering department have developed two deep neural models. This has been done to understand the rhetorical roles of sentences in a legal case judgment.

India uses a Common Law system that gives priority to doctrine of legal precedent over statutory law. In India, legal documents are often written in an unstructured way.

Science & Engineering Research Board

Research lead Professor Saptarshi Ghosh explained, “Taking 50 judgments from the Supreme Court of India, we segmented these by first labelling sentences with the help of three senior law students from IIT Kharagpur’s Rajiv Gandhi School of Intellectual Property Law, then performing extensive analysis of the human-assigned labels and developing a high quality gold standard corpus to train the machine to carry out the task.”

The project is being supported by the Science & Engineering Research Board (SERB) of the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, under the project, ‘NYAYA: A Legal Assistance System for Legal Experts and the Common Man in India’.

Summarisation of legal judgments, legal search

The neural methods used by the team enables automatic learning of the features, given sufficient amount of data. It can be used across multiple legal domains. It can also help in tasks like summarisation of legal judgments, legal search, case law analysis.

Ghosh’s research scholar, Paheli Bhattacharya is using network and text analysis to understand if two legal documents are similar. Other researchers associated with this project include Kripabandhu Ghosh from the Tata Research Development and Design Centre, Pune, and Dr. Adam Wyner from Swansea University, UK and Shounak Paul.

Ghosh added, “We are trying to build an AI system which can give guidance to the common man about which laws are being violated in a given situation, or if there is merit in taking a particular situation to court, so that legal costs can be minimised.”

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