The Back View episode 5 – Professor Dominic Regan

In 1992, the late John Backhouse predicted lawyers working from home and engaging with people using computers.

Back then, the internet was in its infancy, emails were relatively new and 64-bit microprocessors were the latest word in PCs.

Lawyers have ghastly reputation for being luddites and doing things the ‘old fashioned way’, but, says Professor Dominic Regan of City University, London, that’s just not true.

Chatting with Ian Jones, Director at Backhouse Jones, the affable professor charts lawyers interaction with technology – being among the first business groups to embrace the fax machine – and points to the lag in courts which have ‘not yet caught up’.

He talks about why someone parachuted into a British court from Dickensian times wouldn’t see many differences, but also how something called ‘predictive coding’ is revolutionising the mass of documents required for trial.

He discusses whether ‘virtual courts’ have a place and what it’s really like to be in court, plus bad practices by some lawyers and why there’s nothing new about ‘human rights’.

Controversially, they explore the topic of capital punishment, alongside the QC’s dog that gained a qualification, and how a school bus injury resulted in an unexpected response….

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