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LawNext is a weekly podcast hosted by Bob Ambrogi, who is internationally known for his writing and speaking on legal technology and innovation. Each week, Bob interviews the innovators and entrepreneurs who are driving what’s next in the legal industry. From legal technology startups to new law firm business models to enhancing access to justice, Bob and his guests explore the future of law and legal practice.

Dec 13, 2021

When COVID-19 first swept across the United States in March 2020, it forced courts across the country to shut down, bringing trials and other legal proceedings to a screeching halt. A new study by The Pew Charitable Trusts examined how courts responded in the aftermath of that shutdown, and it concluded that they did pretty well overall, rapidly embracing technology and revolutionizing their operations.

But the study, How Courts Embraced Technology, Met the Pandemic Challenge, and Revolutionized Their Operations, also found that courts’ accelerated adoption of technology disproportionately benefited those with legal representation, while posing disadvantages for those without legal representation, particularly those whose access was limited by lack of technology, physical disabilities or limited English proficiency.

We take a deep dive into the report with Qudsiya Naqui, a lawyer and officer on the Civil Legal System Modernization team at Pew that conducted this research and produced the report. Naqui is a podcaster herself, host of Down to the Struts, a podcast about disability and design that focuses on building more inclusive systems and structures that acknowledge the breadth of human diversity. 

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