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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.

Oct 1, 2018

What if a lawyer could know how a judge is likely to rule in a case or how heavy is a judge’s workload? Rick Merrill was a litigator at a large law firm who became frustrated over his inability to get meaningful information about the judges before whom he appeared. So last year, he launched Gavelytics, a California company that uses analytics and artificial intelligence to analyze docket data and provide lawyers with a range of insights about judges’ propensities, workloads and leanings.

In this episode of LawNext, host Robert Ambrogi visits Gavelytics’ office in Santa Monica, where he sits down with Merrill, now the company’s CEO, and Justin Brownstone, VP of sales and litigation counsel, to talk about the product one year after its launch, how lawyers use analytics for strategic and competitive purposes, and how analytics and AI are being used more broadly in law.

Before founding Gavelytics, Merrill was a litigator with the law firm Greenberg Traurig in Los Angeles, involved primarily in real estate and other commercial disputes. He received his law degree from UCLA School of Law, completed the executive program at the UCLA Anderson School of Business, and received his undergraduate degree from the University of Southern California.

Brownstone is also a former litigator with several Los Angeles firms. He is also a graduate of UCLA School of Law, where he was a managing editor of the law review. He earned his undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College.