Blockchain is an improving and exciting technology, set to impact numerous areas of law. Through ‘Smart Contracts’, it could revolutionize the process of achieving nuptial agreements. Before, going further let’s learn what Blockchain is?
An Overview of Blockchain
Blockchain is a real-time digital public ledger of transactions that can be recorded. From financial transactions to ownership of physical assets, everything can be stored in Blockchain. Each record is encrypted and time stamped, which is immutable. The decentralized ledger is distributed across different computers in Blockchain. Any modification to the ledger needs consensus among the network. Therefore, it is almost impossible to hack a Blockchain network.
Hence, practically it is safer and transparent as compared to the current system of money or document exchange. The Blockchain development could result in drastic changes to numerous industries, including App development, legal, supply chain, etc. Perhaps, it has the capability to impact areas of law. This includes deed management and land registry, the creation of legal contracts, intellectual property rights management, etc.. Contract law will be directly impacted by smart contracts, nullifying the need for human legal action.
Use-Case of Blockchain in Family Law
In the USA, you can save your marriage certificate on Blockchain for future purposes. In October 2014, David Mondrus and Joyce were the first couples to do so.
The Blockchain based marriage certificate can help you to minimize disputes caused during the divorce process. If the parties want a divorce, the agreement in the contract will be able to run through Blockchain, executing the division of assets between the two parties. Similarly, it can be applied to scenarios such as property division, rights of access to children, and property ownership.
Contracts are Becoming More Efficient and Uniform
Lawyers can create legal documents with OpenLaw templates. In the contracting domain, it is combining a function that would permit two contractual parties to negotiate by marking up old drafts. After the contract is completed, it collects signatures from the parties and saves it on the Blockchain. Moreover, lawyers can embed self-executing smart contracts in designed agreements that can be used for transferring value or paying employees in real-time.
Though there are different services focused on every step throughout the process, Blockchain connects all these pieces together. OpenLaw is in the testing phase and will be offered to the public for free. Wright, Associate Clinical Professor at Cardozo Law School, said “a lot of the scut work lawyers do on a day-to-day basis will presumably go down over time.” Smart Contracts are so impactful that clients will drive the legal industry towards uniformity, turning it to be efficient comparatively.
More Dependability on Legal Documents
The chances of disputes become zero, with an unchangeable record of completed contracts, as well as time-stamped signatures. Records based on Blockchain are admissible as a proof to the court. Arizona enacted a law in 2017, acknowledging the legality of contracts and signatures uploaded on Blockchain.
The Blockchain is often known as a trustless technology as you do not have to trust on anything else, except the Blockchain. According to Robert Ambrogi, a practitioner, and writer on legal technology, “Blockchain provides a form of proving that different kinds of transactions have happened in a way that people can trust, and not contingent on a particular vendor system.” If you sign a contract with Blockchain, it can be confirmed now and forever because it cannot be edited or deleted.
Blockchain Implicates Skills of Lawyers
Blockchain will involve a few routines and basic contract works. Lawyers will focus on complicated agreements, and the smart contracts triggers fixed with those agreements. Their capability to set forth the rules carefully behind smart contracts coding could become relevant. The data analytics capacity of law firms’ could be improved by uploading data on Blockchain into machine learning algorithms. However, it does not imply that the lawyers will have to become coders. Instead of skilled coders, lawyers will work with engineers.
Should We Go Ahead with Blockchain in Legal Industry?
Undoubtedly, the marriage between Blockchain and lawyers looks appealing, but everything is in its early stage. Though wide-scale adoption hasn’t occurred yet, there are proof-of-concepts happening in the legal industry.
Wright said, “Lawyers are wonderful as a profession, but we’re a bit risk-adverse when it comes to new technology.” It seems, Blockchain will have an impact on how we live and how the organizations are running their businesses because it offers:
- Products Tracking Accurately
- Decentralization of Transactions
- Cost Reduction
Be it legal or finance, transportation or health, Blockchain is revamping different industries, by making them streamlined. The future of Blockchain is uncertain, but a whole new branch of its applications and laws is developing along with it. In order to be relevant, lawyers will have to be Blockchain-savvy and involved in all stages.