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  Legal research is often cumbersome. Lawyers have to plough through numerous documents in search of an answer to their legal questions or to find a legal precedent that could help their case. Until recently, this was a universal problem, faced by professionals across the world.
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But thanks to contemporary technology, there are ways to make this aspect of the practice of law easier. More lawyers and law firms now rely on smart systems to sift through past court cases, judgments, and editorial summaries. With these tools, they can find the right kind of legal data after just a few clicks. Judy is a legal research solution that fits within this category. It’s a searchable database containing thousands of cases, rulings, and summaries from courts in Nigeria and Ghana. Because it’s backed by Artificial Intelligence. Users can ask for and receive specific kinds of legal content from it, a process that takes just a few seconds. The startup behind this software was founded in 2018 by three people: Bright Oleka, Sadiq Okocha, and Charles Thompson. They decided to launch it after their survey of the legal ecosystem in four African commonwealth countries revealed the difficulties lawyers were having with legal research.
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Judy currently serves lawyers and law firms in Nigeria and Ghana. This is probably connected to the fact that the three-man team is made up of two Nigerians and one Ghanaian. The startup was also founded while they were at the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) in Accra, Ghana. Researchers can search the Judy database, filter results according to keywords and jurisdiction, and discover specific case judgments by using principles they establish as search terms. The developers of this solution have built it to ‘read’ and ‘understand’ queries containing technical language, and to provide prompt responses to such queries. Users may work with the Judy platform either through its mobile or web app. Two or more lawyers can even collaborate on briefs from wherever they are using either of these options. Judy is only accessible to people and companies that have subscribed for it. There are multiple subscription programs listed on its website, each with its price. Standard plans cost between ₦700 and ₦3,500 per month. Enterprise plans (for firms) are fixed at between ₦20,000 and ₦27,000 per month. In 2019, Judy received $100,000 in seed funding from the Meltwater Foundation based in Switzerland. Since then, they have worked to expand their operations in the two countries in which they are active. With further support, they aim to serve lawyers and law firms in other English-speaking countries on the continent. Featured Image Source: JUDY – Youtube
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This article was first published on 16th February 2021


Ikenna Nwachukwu holds a bachelor's degree in Economics from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. He loves to look at the world through multiple lenses- economic, political, religious and philosophical- and to write about what he observes in a witty, yet reflective style.

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