Lawyers should not ignore new artificial intelligence tools such as Harvey


I have now tried a myriad of tools on the market (listed below), many of which are promising. Though it’s still early days for the software, I predict that as the tools mature, they will be significantly better. We lawyers will not be able to ignore them.

At Caravel Law, we had the privilege of being early beta users for a software called Harvey. Harvey, built on OpenAI and ChatGPT technology, is backed by the OpenAI startup fund, which has received $5 million in funding. This startup of about five people living in an Airbnb in Silicon Valley (yes, I know this sounds like the plot line for the show Silicon Valley) has built one of the best GPT tools I have tested in legal tech.

Harvey advertises itself as a legal assistant and operates on an interface similar to ChatGPT, allowing you to ask open-ended questions. It also provides an option to generate a research memo and an outline. Unlike ChatGPT (even ChatGPT-4), Harvey does a much better job around legal-specific questions. You can ask Harvey to draft a clause for a contract or prepare legal memos. I have even asked it to draft a statement of defence and a motion for summary judgment for liquidated damages. It does a surprisingly good job in these cases. However, Harvey does have its limits.

Ultimately, we cannot substitute human judgment for a computer. These tools may provide a first draft, inspiration, or insights that could be used in a final deliverable for a client. Though it could draft a simple lease agreement, it would not be able to draft, for example, a more extensive 40-page commercial lease agreement.

While I tested the technology, I wondered how Harvey would do around Canadian law, considering Americans developed it. To our surprise at Caravel Law, Harvey does a surprisingly good job. The capabilities are undeniably impressive, and some lawyers at our firm were amazed by Harvey’s skills, while others described it as “eerie.”