Founders Caroline Zand-Korteweg (left) and Ingrid van de Pol-Mensing (right) © Uncover
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About Uncover

  • Founders: Caroline Zand-Korteweg en Ingrid van de Pol-Mensing
  • Founded in: april 2022
  • Employees: 6
  • Money raised: -
  • Ultimate goal: become the default software for all lawyers (worldwide)

Lawyers are usually busy with several cases at the same time and work under great time pressure. Nevertheless, it is important for a case that they read files carefully and in detail. Former lawyers Caroline Zand-Korteweg and Ingrid van de Pol-Mensing came up with a solution: an AI tool that helps lawyers work up to 30 percent faster. The first version came on the market just before Christmas. In this installment of Start-up of the day, co-founder Ingrid van de Pol-Mensing tells more about Uncover.

How does Uncover work?

“You can import the documents you receive as a lawyer from your client into Uncover. This is a program on your computer that you can subscribe to. When you do so, all text in the documents becomes readable and searchable at once. Including photographs of contract pages, stamps, and handwritten notes. The AI models go to work: they categorize based on content. We have included thousands of files in the AI which the uploaded information is compared against.”

“Then you will see an overview of everything you have imported, for example two contracts and thirty e-mails. Because you see exactly what you are dealing with, you can estimate the approximate time it will take you to go through everything. Our AI can also recognize dates. For example, if an agreement was signed three years ago, you want to know when it was signed. The AI can determine the date and sort all documents in chronological order from that date. You can also read all information in the case file from front to back, filter searches or search through all documents at the same time.”

How accurate is the program?

“It depends on what kind of data is uploaded, but if everything is legible, the facts and data that are imported are 99 percent reliable. To ensure you are not misled, the user is always in control. For example, you can check whether the AI tool has placed something in the right category or whether it should be a different one.”

Aren’t you still going through everything yourself then?

“You have to read all the documents before the process anyway. The difference is that everything is already categorized and structured, so you know where to start and what to focus your attention on.”

What problem does your program solve?

“The legal profession is a profession where people are always under time pressure and have to deliver the best possible work as quickly as possible. Often lawyers will print everything and sort the pile and then go through it one by one. If practical matters are automated, the time you have left can be spent on actual legal work. One client’s file will take you a few days. But the reality is that lawyers often have several cases running at the same time, which can easily take a few weeks. Clients often send new documents later, which makes it take even longer. A file can grow and eventually contain hundreds of documents. If you then have to go through everything again a few months later, you no longer always know the details of something or where you found it and you run the risk of doing double work. That is extremely time-consuming.”

How did you get the idea?

“We both worked as lawyers for ten years. As lawyers, we had many cases that brought us into contact with the problem ourselves. We spent evenings behind our computers going through all those files again and again. I always had all kinds of timers on for all kinds of deadlines. We also saw developments over the years: files contain more and more documents and clients want advice faster and faster. We thought there had to be something to overcome that. Digging through files is not a very difficult job, but it is important that everything goes well. Why is no one trying to go through it with technological aids, we wondered. We started looking for a solution but decided to develop it ourselves. Now is the right time because the world of AI is developing incredibly fast. Tools can now provide a real added value.”

Do you eventually want to conquer other sectors with Uncover?

“In principle, the tool can be used in all kinds of sectors, but we don’t want that right now. We believe that we stand out from competitors because we have deep market knowledge and have really experienced this problem ourselves. So by lawyers for lawyers. We see ourselves making this product suitable for all types of lawyers rather than a completely different market. What exactly people do at a bank from minute to minute is a completely different story.”