I wrote about the launch of Gavelytics in October 2017 which offered judicial analytics for two of the largest California county courts: Los Angeles and Riverside. They recently added data for San Francisco County. The number one analytics solution demanded by respondents to my annual Dewey B Strategic Start Stop Survey is a comprehensive 50 state court docket and analytics product. Well the 50 state solution is still a pipe dream, but the folks at Gavelytics have continue to use AI and machine learning to build out an analytics solution for California lawyers who litigate in county courts. Rick Merrill the Founder and CEO of Gavelytics, described Gavelytics as being a product “developed by lawyers for lawyers,” and designed to address the fact that most lawyers have very little insight into the behavior of state court judges.
The Use Cases
At launch, the product was positioned to address 4 use cases:
• Preparation for a client pitch
• Deciding on filing a peremptory challenge to transfer case to a new judge
• Developing a strategy based on a judge’s history
• Managing client expectations regarding timing and outcome
To these we can now add:
• Understanding an arbitrator’s history
• Researching orders to get insights into a judges thinking on various issues.
The Original Gavelytics Features include:
• Motion Analyzer compares each judges rulings to the overall average rulings of other judges on over 100 motion types
• Judicial Workload – compared to the average judge workload
• Gavel Score – is an indicator of whether a judge tends to rule for plaintiffs or defendants.
• Sec. 170.6 analyzer. The California Code of Civil Procedure gives parties the right to make a peremptory motion to disqualify a judge which must be granted. Analytics into how often both plaintiffs and defendants make such motions
New Features added today:
Civil Court Rulings Research
Today they are announcing the enhancement of their judicial analytics tool with a full civil court rulings database including 13,000 Los Angeles County rulings going back two years. Gavelytics has moved into the legal research market. The rulings data base will allow lawyers to gain insights into a judges thinking by making a judges rulings searchable by topic or type of motion.
The archive includes data on 30 arbitrators who are former L.A. Superior Court judges. The archive tool will help lawyers to explore the arbitrator’s judicial history. For example, did the arbitrator favor plaintiffs or defendants? How often were they “170.6’d” by defendants? Each arbitrator can be benchmarked against their peers rulings. Merrill believes that “This kind of transparency will fundamentally change how litigators evaluate arbitrator candidates.”
Subscribers will not be charged for this additional content and functionality.
I spoke with Justin Brownstone, VP of Sales & Litigation Counsel about upcoming developments. Here are just some of the new features in the works. The rulings database and arbitrator analytics will be rolled out for San Francisco county next. San Mateo county analytics will be added in the near future. Next week they will load the first set of probate data for LA probate judges.
Brownstone also explained that Gavelytics has a repository of a data for a quarter of a million county filings across California. They face a huge challenge normalizing data across the various counties. Brownstone explained how the local differences between the various courts prevent Gavalytics from applying one algorithm across the whole data set. The algorithm has to be adjusted for each court in order to assure the consistent quality of results and human quality assurance is required to standardize the results.
Here is a link to the full press release.