• What We Do

    We accelerate the next generation of startups that will change the way legal services are delivered


    We are building a community

    We are looking for hard-working, creative entrepreneurs who are passionate about changing the way legal services are delivered within the justice system, law firms, and the government.


    We connect you with valuable partners and mentors

    Our program involves 1-hour weekly virtual conferences with leading legal technology entrepreneurs, innovative law firms, industry consultants, court administrators, CTOs, angel investors and VCs committed to investing in early-stage tech products. We bring in thought-leaders from the legal profession and coaching experts to hone your pitch and enrich your understanding of the legal services ecosystem.


    We are here to support your growth

    Our mission is to strategically tailor resources to help your startup thrive, from access to highly intelligent interns through Duke University and leaders in legal tech fields, to showcasing your product at the Duke Law Tech Lab Demo Day.

  • Our Mission

    The Duke Law Tech Lab (DLTL) is a program of the Duke Center on Law & Tech at Duke University School of Law.


    Our mission is to help your startup thrive by building community among legal tech entrepreneurs and providing access to high-quality content needed by many early stage founders and teams who may be leading their first entrepreneurial venture.

  • By the Numbers

    We've worked with 30 companies over 4 cohorts since the Duke Law Tech Lab started in fall 2016.

    After the Duke Law Tech Lab, ten companies have been accepted into the

    LexisNexis Legal Tech Accelerator.

    $25k given away in prize money

    We've distributed over $35,000 total in prize money to the top companies since 2017. We don't take equity in any of the companies in our program.

    $10k+ given away in grant money

    We've given away $11,500 in grant money to the companies with a mission to increase access to legal services in our 2019 & 2020 cohorts.

    75+ judges reviewed applications over 4 cohorts

    Our extensive network of Duke Law faculty, alumni, current law students, staff and other legal tech leaders review applications to the Duke Law Tech Lab.

    We are grateful to the many legal tech leaders, entrepreneurs, practicing attorneys, marketing experts, pitch coaches, angel investors, and other experts who provide content for our program. In 2019 & 2020, over 50 individuals provided unique content to the companies in the cohort.

  • Who We Are

    We're an entrepreneurial team with experience in startups, law firms, investing, and academia


    DLTL is coordinated by faculty, staff, and students at Duke Law under the Duke Center on Law and Technology,

    led by Director Jeff Ward. We are supported by an advisory board (below) of legal tech leaders who help us strategize and provide feedback.




    We recruit our application judges from Duke Law's network of legal tech leaders invested in supporting innovation in legal service delivery.



    Presenters & Mentors

    We connect our teams with experts, law firms, justice system stakeholders, student interns, angel investors, venture capitalists, innovators, pitch coaches, marketing experts, influencers, and others from Duke University's extensive network.




    Duke Law Tech Lab was launched in 2017
    by Duke Law students, alumni, and faculty, and led by the efforts of Duke Law alum Bill Warren, who now serves on our advisory board.



  • Advisory Board

    Andrew Arruda

    ROSS Intelligence

    Bill Warren

    Peeps Democracy

    Co-Founder of the Duke Law Tech Lab

    Camille Stell

    Lawyer's Mutual Consulting

    Chris Martin

    Latham & Watkins

    Ed Walters


    Elizabeth McMillan

    Smart Lien, LLC

    2018 Duke Law Tech Lab

    Elizabeth Stone Gerding

    Skopos Labs

    2017 Duke Law Tech Lab

    Felicity Conrad


    Jeff Pfeifer


    Jim Wagner


    Pete Sanborn


  • Why work with us?

    We continue to evolve the Duke Law Tech Lab to help address the most pressing challenges facing early stage legal tech companies:


    • The vast majority of our Founders are lawyers or experienced as self-represented litigants - not serial entrepreneurs, MBAs, or technologists - who have seen a gap or need in the legal profession and are developing a solution.

    • The market for legal tech products, both BTB and BTC, is unique and continually evolving as more individuals, governments, and companies embrace the use of technology in the legal and civic sectors.

    • While many startup founders in all industries feel it is a lonely road, legal tech entrepreneurs are in particular need of support from other legal tech leaders.

    The DLTL provides a platform for our teams to engage with legal tech leaders, law firms, justice system stakeholders, student interns, angel investors, venture capitalists, innovators, influencers, and others from Duke University's extensive network.


  • FAQs

    When does the next application open?

    Our 2020 program is complete, and we'll post information here when we're accepting applications for our next cohort.


    Email us at info@dukelawtechlab.com or fill out the Contact Us form below to let us know you'd like to be notified about future program offerings. Follow the Duke Center on Law & Tech on Twitter or LinkedIn for the latest updates!

    What is required on the application?

    We don't want the application process to be burdensome, as we consider this program "light-touch." Generally, our application requires the following minimum information:

    • Contact information for team members who plan to participate in the program, including a team leader and up to two additional team members. We also as for a brief bio of your team leader. 
    • Company basic description and information, including links to any social media accounts or websites, the amount of funding you have raised so far, and how your company is legally structured under state law in the United States, if applicable
    • A slide deck or business plan which includes information about your product, market potential and traction, and team members. Usually 10-15 slides in a .ppt, .pdf, or .key file will suffice.

    Are there deliverables or milestone requirements?

    The Duke Law Tech Lab is intentionally a “light-touch” pre-accelerator. As such, we do not ask anything burdensome of participating teams. We will, however, ask teams to work on tasks that bolster company growth and prepare to present at Demo Day at the end of the program. Because the Duke Law Tech Lab also aims at early-stage teams with highly individualized needs, these specific tasks are likely to depend on the particular needs of your company in light of advice from your team mentors.

    Does the DLTL require an equity stake in the companies who participate?

    No. As a light-touch accelerator, we do not require any future equity in your company.

    Do you accept companies outside the US?

    In order to provide the best support to our participants possible, we only accept US-based companies for our Duke Law Tech Lab program.


    If your company is based outside of the United States, we would still love to connect with you! We love finding opportunities to highlight international companies with our students and sponsors.

    What is Demo Day?

    Demo Day is an exciting opportunity to showcase new and innovative legal tech products in front of other #legaltech leaders. It is a celebration event involving other entrepreneurs, technologists, lawyers of all stripes, big law firm management, investor networks, and many more. Our 2020 event was virtual.


    Learn more about our past Demo Day events.

    What is the Duke Law Tech Lab's impact?

    By harnessing our entrepreneurial ecosystem in legal tech, we help founders learn from each other, legal tech leaders, subject-matter experts, and key industry players.


    Past teams from our first two cohorts have seen success such as:

    • increased users,
    • acceptance into a residential accelerator,
    • substantial start-up funding from third-party investors,
    • the founding of advisory boards, and
    • beta tests of their products in new markets.

    What have previous participants said about Duke Law Tech Lab?

    "Every early-stage legaltech startup deserves a Duke Law Tech Lab experience. Our win is a result of everything the program poured into us." - Sonja Ebron of Courtroom5 (2019)



    "We are so grateful for the Duke Law Tech Lab for putting together an informative and engaging 13-week program that introduced us to industry leaders who have experience building successful legal tech companies." - Yousef Kassim of Easy Expunctions (2019)




    "Participating in the Duke Law Tech Lab was a boost for our new company, and it came at the perfect time. We learned a lot about how to grow and improve our services, and made many good connections. Above all though, the program provided us with invaluable validation and legitimacy. Thanks DTLT!" - Brandt McMillan of Smart Lien, LLC (2018)




    "Having the opportunity to meaningfully connect with likeminded individuals and teams doing innovative work in the legal space was one of my favorite aspects of the accelerator. The weekly informative but casual meetings kept me focused on business strategy, growth, marketing and overall presentation of myself and our company. ... What has surprised me the most is how willing the speakers and advisors are to connect and mentor. I expected maybe a 20-30 minute chat with key players in the industry and instead, I’ve been able to grow my advisory board and start executing on expansion plans." - Erin Levine, Hello Divorce (2018)




    "Skopos Labs was at a critical early stage of development and the content and delivery DLTL provided was on target and of immense value… All of us at Skopos Labs are grateful for the chance to work with DLTL and we'd recommend any legal tech startup apply!" (2017)




    "The Duke Law Tech Lab did more that just help our [vTestify's] business, it helped to develop and nurture our team. Meeting with industry leaders, discussing sales/marketing strategies, and building on our skill sets helped to enrich not only our company but also every member of our group. These are skills that will be invaluable long after the intensive work of nurturing a startup fades." (2017)




    "We took great pride in being selected as one of the participants in the Duke Law Tech Lab (‘DLTL’). Duke has an unbelievable reputation, and this experience was a jolt of energy and confidence that has helped us double down our efforts in making TrustBooks successful." (2017)

  • 2020

    Don't Get Mad Get Paid


    People Clerk
    YoTengo Bot



  • 2019




    Easy Expunctions
    Patent Bots
    Princeton Gavel
    Text A Lawyer
  • 2018

    Hello Divorce
    HUGO Analytics, LLC




  • 2017

  • Contact Us

    Don't be afraid to reach out. You + us = awesome.