The Law Commission of Ontario (LCO) has released a third major report examining artificial intelligence (AI) and automated decision-making (ADM) in the Canadian justice system.
“Accountable AI” analyzes AI and ADM systems used to assist government decision-making, and considers issues of legal accountability when these systems are applied in decision-making in the civil and administrative justice systems.
Key questions explored in the report include:
- Why and how governments are using AI
- How AI changes government decision-making
- The elements of AI regulation
- How to fulfill the promise of “Trustworthy AI”
- How to adapt human rights and administrative law to government AI decision-making
- Ensuring public engagement
- Improving access to justice
The LCO’s “Accountable AI” report identifies 19 recommendations to address bias in AI systems, “black-box” decision-making, due process, and the need for public engagement.
The final report is available online here: https://www.lco-cdo.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/LCO-Accountable_AI_Final_Report.pdf.
For the LCO’s other reports on AI, ADM and the justice system, visit the LCO website here: https://www.lco-cdo.org/en/our-current-projects/ai-adm-and-the-justice-system/.
The Canadian Judicial Council (CJC) has released an updated version of Ethical Principles for Judges / Principes de déontologie judiciare. For more than twenty years, this publication has provided guidance on a range of questions within the judicial community.
While this new publication maintains a format similar to the 1998 volume, it raises questions about present day subjects such as the digital literacy of judges and addresses a range of important issues such as the need to be alert to “the history, experience and circumstances of Canada’s Indigenous peoples, and to the diversity of cultures and communities that make up this country”. In discussing the importance of this new iteration of Ethical Principles for Judges, Chief Justice of Canada and Canadian Judicial Council Chairperson, the Right Honourable Richard Wagner, noted that, “[t]hese revised principles explore new and emerging issues relevant to our modern times”.
Ethical Principles for Judges includes sections on:
- Judicial Independence;
- Integrity and Respect;
- Diligence and Competence;
- Equality; and
Ethical Principles for Judges / Principes de déontologie judiciare, published by the Canadian Judicial Council, is available in English and French here: https://cjc-ccm.ca/sites/default/files/documents/2021/CJC_20-301_Ethical-Principles_Bilingual%20FINAL.pdf.
“Regulating AI: Critical Issues and Choices” is the second in a series of papers by the Law Commission of Ontario (LCO) that seeks to examine the use of artificial intelligence (AI), automated decision-making (ADM) and algorithms in Canada’s justice system. The focus of this paper is on regulatory frameworks for AI and ADM systems that support decision-making. Understanding the implications of AI and ADM systems and how to regulate them has become increasingly important in Canada and throughout the world. This paper contemplates a range of important questions surrounding the regulation of these systems, including: how AI and ADM should be defined for regulatory purposes; how and when governments should be required to disclose their use of AI and ADM; what role “ethical AI” might play in government regulation of AI and ADM; and whether government regulation of AI and ADM should promote innovation and/or human rights.
“Regulating AI: Critical Issues and Choices” by Nye Thomas, Erin Chochla and Susie Lindsay is available on the Law Commission of Ontario’s website here: https://www.lco-cdo.org/en/the-lco-releases-a-new-report-regulating-ai-critical-issues-and-choices/.
The Cyberjustice Laboratory (Laboratoire de Cyberjustice) in Montreal has launched a 6-year research initiative to examine artificial intelligence in the justice sector. This Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) funded project includes 16 sub-projects, and a multi-disciplinary and international team of 45 researchers and 42 partners.
The Autonomy through Cyberjustice Technologies (ACT) research project by the Cyberjustice Laboratory will provide greater understanding of the socio-legal and ethical underpinnings of applying and integrating artificial intelligence tools within the justice system. More information about this important research initiative, being led Professor Karim Benyekhlef, Direcor of the Cyberjustice Laboratory, is available in the press release, available in English here: http://cyberjustice.openum.ca/files/sites/102/PressReleaseACT.pdf, and in French here: http://www.cyberjustice.ca/files/sites/102/CommuniqueAJC-VFinale.pdf. Visit the Autonomy through Cyberjustice Technologies (ACT) website here: https://www.ajcact.org/.
Interesting (and rare) article on the business problems of a Toronto-area law firm trying to provide accessible services in today’s Globe and Mail.
There are a variety of issues tied up here, including providing accessible legal services to survivors of domestic abuse, multi-disciplinary partnerships, alternative business structures, and crowdfunding. The article also highlights a need for more discussion about how to run a sustainable legal practice to provide accessible services.
In the aftermath of the Vilardell/TLABC decisions in Canada, those interested in court fees and access to justice may be interested in current trends in the UK. There are a few articles on rising court fees in the UK, including this one in The Telegraph, this one in Global Legal Post, and this article in the South Wales Evening Post.