Digital transformation is simply not the use of new software or the digitization of existing processes. The evolution of technology and the internet has led to a real revolution in the legal field. It has generated new conflicts that appear in the digital world, where traditional rules and regulations do not seem to be sufficient to guarantee a peaceful coexistence.
Therefore, a demand for attorneys that specialize in digital law and legal risk management has appeared. Digital attorneys have become the most knowledgeable lawyers in technology fields. They are focused on delivering practical and innovative solutions to the toughest challenges faced by the clients.
The DA’s core specializations include resolving international and cross-border disputes, advocating digital and crypto legal communities’ rights and carrying out legal risk management.
Digital attorneys are familiar with the whole scope of such digital skills, which are used in a day-to-day professional attorney’s context:
- communicating – sending emails securely, using attachments, and participating on social media and also being good with English;
- handling information– using search engines, being aware that not all online content is reliable, accessing content across devices;
- problem-solving – finding solutions to problems using FAQs/tutorials/chat, presenting solutions through software, and improving productivity;
- being safe and legal online – understanding best practice in data storage/sharing, updating and keeping passwords secure, and taking precautions against viruses.
Knowledge of the foreign language, especially English language, has become also the one of the most required skill for digital attorney.
General overview of the digital attorneys’ scope of work
At the same time these digital skills support the provision on the relevant legal service, such as:
- agreements, contracts, registration and protection of software, cloud computing, IP
- advice on electronic contracting.
- advice on online marketing, as well as digital advertising.
- legal assistance regarding online reputation.
- advice to Fintech companies and startups.
- advice for competitions, draws and online games;
- audits for online corporate reputation and works related with online fraud detection.
Digital attorneys from Ukraine
Digital attorneys in Ukraine mostly take part in the litigation. Legal disputes refer to the civil, economic issues and cybercrimes. Dispute resolution in Ukraine includes court procedures, fees and funding, interim remedies, expert evidence, appeals, class actions, enforcement, etc. Litigants, whether individuals or legal entities, can present their own case in court proceedings or engage a representative to act on their behalf. Only attorneys admitted to the Ukrainian Bar can conduct cases before the courts and represent parties in court proceedings.
At the same time digital attorneys are advising national and international clients on New Technologies, Data Protection and E-Commerce matters.
Digital transformation concerns also the judicial system of Ukraine. Especially both an electronic court and an electronic evidence are the new innovation tools for human rights protection.
The Ukrainian procedural legislation regulates electronic evidence, and as a result, Ukrainian courts accept such evidence in their consideration of the dispute. For instance, in procedural law such innovations are one of the means of achieving the effectiveness of civil justice, as they facilitate the full, comprehensive consideration and resolutionof a civil lawsuit, the establishment of the true circumstances of the case, and the adoption of lawful and grounded decisions by courts,which is the purpose of civil justice.
Electronic evidence is submitted to the court in three ways: in the original, in the electronic copy certified by an electronic digitalsignature, in paper copies, certified in the manner prescribed by law. Besides, the party submitting a copy of the electronic evidencemust indicate that he/ she or some other person has the original of the electronic evidence. It is the responsibility of the claimant toattach to the statement of claim all the evidence available to support the circumstances on which the claim is based (if written or elec-tronic evidence is provided, the claimant may attach a copy of the relevant evidence to the statement of claim).
For example, Article 100 of the Code of Civil Procedure of Ukraine established:
“Electronic evidence is information in electronic (digital) form that contains information about the circumstances relevant to the case, in particular, electronic documents (including text documents, graphics, plans, photographs, video and audio recordings, etc.), web sites (pages), text, multimedia and voice messages, metadata, databases and other data in electronic form. Such data can be stored, in particular, on portable devices (memory cards, mobile phones, etc.), servers, backup systems, other places of data storage in electronic form (including the Internet)”.
The claimant can submitelectronic evidence using the Unified Court Information and Telecommunication System.
The Code of Criminal Procedure of Ukraine does not contain a definition of electronic evidence, but judges accept such type of evidence also.
On 26 May 2021, the Law of Ukraine No. 1416-IX On Amendment of Some Legislative Acts on the Provision of Gradual Implementation of the United Judicial Information and Telecommunication System came into force, which introduces an ‘electronic court’ in Ukraine through changes to the Code of Commercial Procedure of Ukraine, Code of Civil Procedure of Ukraine, Code of Administrative Procedure of Ukraine and Law of Ukraine On the High Council of Justice.
The idea of the electronic court as a part of the functioning court system in Ukraine appeared in late 2017, and the first attempts to implement this idea with the Unified Judicial Information and Telecommunication System (UJITS) took place in early 2019.
What about the e-signature?
Currently, the use of electronic signatures in Ukraine is regulated by Laws of Ukraine: On Electronic Trust Services, On Electronic Documents and Electronic Document Transfers, On E-Commerce, and others.
Where law requires a signature of a person, that requirement is met in relation to a data message if:
1)the method is used to identify a person and to indicate a person’s approval of the information contained in the data message;
2) the method is as reliable.
The Law of Ukraine On Electronic Trust Services includes such concepts as “electronic signature”, “advanced electronic signature” and “qualified electronic signature”.
The evolution of technology and the internet has led to a real revolution in the legal field.
There is a need for a corresponding legal service from the appropriate digital attorneys in the context of the ever-increasing use of various information technologies in public relations, electronic correspondence, the emergence and rapid development of e-commerce, electronic means of payment.
Judicial system of Ukraine is familiar with the electronic court, electronic evidence and electronic signature. This provide the digital lawyers with a lot of opportunities for successful representation and protection of client’s rights. New technologies create complex and novel issues for lawyers. Considering the above mentioned, digital attorney in Ukraine are ready to faced challenges, due to their experience in English, digital skills and legal knowledge.