Argumentation in legal reasoning
Title: Argumentation in legal reasoning
Citation: Iyad RAHWAN and Guillermo R. SIMARI (eds), Argumentation in Artificial Intelligence, New York : Springer, 2009, pp. 363-382
ISBN: 9780387981963; 9780387981970
A popular view of what Artificial Intelligence can do for lawyers is that it can do no more than deduce the consequences from a precisely stated set of facts and legal rules. This immediately makes many lawyers sceptical about the usefulness of such systems: this mechanical approach seems to leave out most of what is important in legal reasoning. A case does not appear as a set of facts, but rather as a story told by a client. For example, a man may come to his lawyer saying that he had developed an innovative product while working for Company A. Now Company B has made him an offer of a job, to develop a similar product for them. Can he do this? The lawyer firstly must interpret this story, in the context, so that it can be made to fit the framework of applicable law. Several interpretations may be possible. In our example it could be seen as being governed by his contract of employment, or as an issue in Trade Secrets law.
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