The Legal Services Board has urged front-line regulators to embrace the opportunities provided by blockchain and peer-to-peer ‘distributed ledgers,’ arguing that they could cut the cost of legal services for consumers. Research by the LSB shows that only 2% of legal service providers are currently using blockchain. Dr Helen Phillips, LSB chair, said: “The potential uses of blockchain technology are both enormous and exciting, and it’s vital that the legal services sector seizes the opportunity to use it to improve access to justice.” Meanwhile, the inaugural vice-dean (innovation) at University College London’s law faculty has said distributed ledger technology (DLT), including blockchain, will eventually transform conveyancing and probate. Dr Anna Donovan said DLT “offer[s] enormous opportunities for the legal services sector. Beyond economic growth, [it] has the potential to enhance market competition, improve access to justice and strengthen trust in the legal system.” Separately, Patrick McKenna in the Global Legal Post examines how the evolution of blockchain will affect clients in a wide range of sectors, including real estate, insurance and securities.

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