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Jaclyn Tsai, Co-Founder, Lee, Tsai & Partners Attorneys-at-Law

Jaclyn Tsai: Influential Thought Leader in Technology

Today, people are spending significantly more time in the virtual world as compared to before, and the virtual world is borderless. However, each country has its own regulations and laws. This presents a practical difficulty for global organizations in comply with the different regulations. One of the biggest hurdles is that the legislative process is somewhat inefficient to keep up with the rapid changes in technology, and most of the legislators often do not have a sufficient grasp of the technology to promulgate laws that are appropriate. As a default, many legislators tend to overregulate in the face of this uncertainty, which is frequently at odds with technological advancement. As such, a new concept/method of rulemaking is needed for the virtual world, rather than modifying the existing methods for governing the rulemaking process applicable to the real world.

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Jaclyn Tsai has always been fascinated with how technology impacts how we live – both positively and negatively. She has been an advocate for allowing certain industries, such as fintech, to self-regulate on a global basis and for the implementation of regulatory technology to satisfy regulatory requirements. The underlying idea is that industry players are more aware of the real issues and governance required for their industry to survive. Jaclyn Tsai is Co-Founder of Lee, Tsai & Partners Attorneys-at-Law. COVID-19 has impacted the legal industry by requiring law firms and lawyers to embrace technology. For the most part, the legal industry has been slower to embrace technology than other industries. There are exceptions, of course, and Lee, Tsai & Partners Firm has been one of them.
Understanding of Diverse Subjects
Jaclyn Tsai started Lee, Tsai & Partners, with her partner, Dr. Chung Teh Lee, in 1998 after working as a judge and the General Counsel of Greater China IBM. In 2013, Jaclyn was appointed as the Minister without Portfolio in the Executive Yuan (Cabinet) and became one of the few female ministers in the government. During her term as Minister without Portfolio, she was responsible for a number of inter-ministry affairs, such as the reformation of laws relating to virtual world development, e-commerce, the sharing economy, digital convergence, the startup environment, open data, and data governance.
Although Jaclyn returned to the Firm in 2016, she has continued to serve the community as a commissioner of the Smart City Committee and Data Governance Committee of the Taipei City Government. She is frequently sought by public and private sectors as an influential thought leader in Taiwan’s technology sector for policy-related issues, such as government preparedness response to 5G, fintech regulation, and cryptocurrency regulations, etc. Her recent talks included COVID-19 related issues, including uses of artificial intelligence to combat the spread of COVID-19, distance medicine and distance education, and privacy and security implications using Skynet technology.
Ensuring Continuity of Services in Pandemic
Lee, Tsai & Partners has been relatively fortunate in Taiwan in terms of the Covid-19. The number of infections has been low compared to other countries. Due to the limited number of community spread cases, the government has not imposed any restrictions that would affect most businesses in Taiwan. Like the rest of Taiwan, the Firm’s preparedness for Covid-19 began during the SARS pandemic. Lee, Tsai & Partners learned then that, to ensure the continuity of its services to its clients, it needed to invest in equipment and technology to ensure that the Firm’s employees could work remotely while ensuring that sufficient security measures are in place to protect client information. Since from inception, the Firm has always had a dedicated in-house MIS team. As a result, Lee, Tsai & Partners was able to ensure that its employees could continue their work virtually quickly. Besides ensuring continuous operations during pandemics or other catastrophes, working remotely has also allowed its lawyers to continue their career paths while attending to matters outside of work.
Implementing Up-to-date Technologies
The pace of business in the modern world requires critical decisions to be accurately and quickly made. Jaclyn believes that the next big change/future of the legal industry would be technological. She believes that keeping up with technological changes and understanding the legal issues that arise from new technology is now a requirement for succeeding in the M&A and IP law industry. Besides equipping itself with knowledge of the current laws and regulations, Lee, Tsai & Partners also implements up-to-date technology, including data management solutions and AI, so that its attorneys can quickly access data and information, allowing them to provide reliable, timely, and thorough advice to its clients.
Promoting Innovation while Protecting Public Interest
With regards to companies in International Trade and Innovation, protection of Intellectual Property Rights is key to ensuring not only the growth but also the survival of hi-tech companies. Given Jaclyn’s background as General Counsel of IBM Greater China, she has counseled a number of clients on their intellectual property portfolio management and IP strategy to reduce their risk in deploying their products in jurisdictions with varying legal protections. Within the Firm, Jaclyn resumed the position as head of the intellectual property and technology and fintech/blockchain practice groups. She also founded and currently leads the Firm’s division, Innovation Law Lab, a team dedicated to researching laws and regulations regarding emerging technologies and proposing regulations that promote innovation while ensuring that public interests are sufficiently protected.
Holding Responsible Leadership Positions
Outside the Firm, Jaclyn regularly holds leadership positions in various organizations and government positions. She is currently the Chairwoman of the Taiwan Women on Boards Association and Taiwan Fintech Association. Through these organizations, she promotes the advancement of women to leadership positions.  Lee, Tsai & Partners also encourages its lawyers to participate in pro bono work. A key example is Lee, Tsai & Partner’s involvement in the Taiwan Foundation for Rare Disorders. Lee, Tsai & Partners drove the establishment of the Foundation in 1999. Dr. Chung Teh Lee, the Firm’s Senior Partner, has acted as the founding chairman of the Foundation.
Utilizing Technology for Betterment of Society
As a practicing Buddhist, Jaclyn meditates daily to still her mind and keep perspective while society/world is rapidly changing due to technological advancement. This spiritual practice keeps her grounded and focused on the big picture that what Lee, Tsai & Partners does in its professional and personal lives should be aimed at serving its community. It is Jaclyn’s firm belief that law (and technology) must always take into consideration humanity/compassion. Her vision for Lee, Tsai & Partners is to cultivate more young talent and have them take a bigger part of the leadership within the Firm and outside the Firm, promoting laws and regulations that allow technological advancement for the betterment of society.