The Center for Legal and Court Technology is an entrepreneurial public service initiative of the Marshall-Wythe Law School at the College of William & Mary and the National Center for State Courts, dedicated to advancing the efficient use of technology in the administration of justice. We are actively engaged in worldwide consulting on the design and implementation of appropriate technology in courtrooms, providing cutting-edge training on the latest advancements in legal technology, keeping the public informed as to news and developments in the area of legal technology, publishing whitepapers, conducting research trials, and giving back to the community through fellowships and community service initiatives like our Fairytale Trials for K-12 students.

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Innovative Legal Issues Likely to Arise from Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things Writing Competition

Fridges that automatically order items which are about to run out, smart houses which respond to voice commands, self-driving cars, and unmanned planes tackling fires are no longer a thing of the future. Artificial Intelligence (including Machine Learning) and the Internet-of-Things are here, and they are likely to create significant legal issues. The new generation of lawyers will face, conceptualize, unlock and potentially resolve many of these issues which are new, complex and multi-faceted.

Law students enrolled, for the 2017-2018 academic year, in law schools in the USA, Canada and the EU are cordially invited to submit a paper addressing one or more innovative legal issues likely to grow out of Artificial Intelligence or the Internet-of-Things.

The following three cash prizes will be awarded to the three best entries:

  • First place: US $2,500
  • Second place: US $1,500
  • Third place: US $1,000

For further details, including topic and deadlines, please read the attached rules.
[2017 Essay Competition Rules]

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A Forfeiture of Rights: For-Life Ankle Monitoring Upheld by the 7th Circuit

Is legal punishment meant to deter future bad behaviors, punish the bad actor, or rehabilitate the bad actor?  Every law student in his or her first week of law school is posed that question, although it seems that no law professor can give a straight answer.  In an interesting, and maybe even surprising, decision, the 7th muddied the waters even further.


In Belleau v. Wall, Michael Belleau challenged the constitutionality of his Wisconsin sentence requiring him as a civilly committed sex-offender to wear an ankle monitoring device after his release in addition to registering as a sex-offender.  The federal district court ruled that this was an invasion of Belleau’s privacy.  Wisconsin appealed that decision to the 7th Circuit.  The 7th Circuit overruled the district court’s decision holding that the burden on privacy is balanced against the gain to society as the test for such a monitoring program to stand.  The Court reasoned that Belleau’s own actions had already severely curtailed” his privacy; thus, the requirement of the ankle monitor was not unduly burdensome.


For more information, click here.

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