Lawyers used ChatGPT to help with a case – it backfired massively | Science and technology news


Two New York attorneys have been fined after filing a legal brief containing fake case citations generated by ChatGPT.

Steven Schwartz of the law firm Levidow, Levidow & Oberman admitted to using the chatbot to research the brief in a client’s personal injury case against the airline Avianca.

He had used it to find legal precedent supporting the case, but lawyers representing the Colombian airline told the court they could not find some examples cited – understandable given that they were almost entirely fictional.

Some of these were outright bogus, while other judges misidentified or involved airlines that didn’t exist.

District Judge Peter Kevin Castel said Schwartz and his colleague Peter LoDuca, named on Schwartz’s behalf, acted in bad faith and made “conscious avoidance actions and false and misleading statements to the court.”

Portions of the brief were “gibberish” and “nonsensical” and contained false quotations, the judge added.

Continue reading:
Is ChatGPT the Ultimate Homework Cheat?

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Will this chatbot replace humans?

Although often impressive, generative AI like OpenAI ChatGPT And Google’s bard have a tendency to “hallucinate” when giving answersas it may not have a real understanding of the information fed to it.

One of Concerns of those worried about the potential of AI concerns the dissemination of disinformation.

When asked by Sky News whether it should be used to compose a legal letter, ChatGPT themselves wrote: “While I can provide general information and support, it is important to note that I am an AI language model and not a qualified legal practitioner.”

Judge Castel said it was “inherently inappropriate” for lawyers to use AI “to assist,” but warned they had a responsibility to ensure their paperwork was accurate.

He said the lawyers “continued to hold the wrong opinions” after the court and the airline questioned them.

Schwartz, LoDuca and their law firm were ordered to pay a combined fine of US$5,000 (£3,926).

Levidow, Levidow & Oberman is considering appealing because they “made a good faith error in not believing that a piece of technology could make cases consistent.”

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