Bachelor of Social Sciences/Bachelor of Laws
Te Piringa - Faculty of Law
Claudia King lives by a simple piece of advice: “instead of waiting, start creating”. The University of Waikato Law school alumna is co-founder, CEO and the driving force behind legal tech company Automio – an automation platform that allows lawyers to create legal documents in seconds and serve their clients online. “Our mission is to modernise the legal profession and to make legal help more affordable and accessible,” Claudia says. Her passion for using technology was fuelled by her studies at the University of Waikato. “I enjoyed the online learning components of my law papers in my last year of university and this began my love of cool tech”.
On any given day, Claudia oversees the strategic direction of the start-up, drives the marketing and works on raising capital to expand the business. Automio truly reflects the changing nature of all businesses in the modern world with its head office in New Plymouth, team members in Queenstown and Sofia, Bulgaria. “My day usually starts at 4am as I like to get at least a couple of hours work in before my kids get up; it’s a busy and challenging role but I am loving the journey,” Claudia says.
Law seems like a logical choice of career for Claudia. “My father was a lawyer and partner in a law firm so I grew up in that environment; reading John Grisham novels probably also had something to do with it,” she says. Claudia visited the University of Waikato on a high school trip and was impressed by the beauty of the campus and how well the facilities were set up.
While at Waikato she enjoyed the practical elements of the coursework, like client interviewing and negotiation. “I have fond memories of Gay Morgan (one of my law lecturers) holding a piece of fabric over her face and then pushing through it to demonstrate the piercing of the corporate veil," she says.
Claudia is also Director of another online legal business Legal Beagle, a self-service legal document site for New Zealanders, designed to revolutionise repeat documentation, such as simple wills online – without the need for meetings, offices and expensive fees.
“There is a wave of change coming with automation and AI, so be prepared for significant change in the legal industry over the coming years. Embrace this change and don’t be afraid of it because the new tools on offer will help us to be better lawyers and give us more freedom than ever before”.