California deploys smart app that guides new parents on right to leave from work

Posted: 24 March 2021
By: Hasan Choudhary

Partnership among California, UCI Law, and Neota Logic provides tailored guidance to citizens  

IRVINE, CA – March 24, 2021 – California law provides job-protected leave from work to qualified employees who have a pregnancy related disability or need time off to bond with a new child from childbirth, adoption, or foster care. Starting in 2021, both forms of leave apply to California employers with just 5 or more employees.

To help employees and employers understand their rights and obligations under these forms of “new-parent leave,” the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) worked with technology provider, Neota Logic, and students at the University of California, Irvine School of Law (UCI Law) to create an interactive app that provides tailored guidance based on inputs from the user. The app interviews the user and provides a narrowly tailored report on how California Law applies to the user’s particular situation.

To develop the app, DFEH and Neota staff worked with UCI Law students, Jaime Allgood, Michael Dobbs, Lauren Lee, Alaina Persinger using the Neota no-code software development platform, which enables people without computer coding training to create advanced software applications. The students worked on the app as part of their academic requirements in the UCI Law clinical course, “Pushing the AI Frontier,” which teaches law students about AI and other emerging technologies. 

“DFEH is excited to use this technology to better assist employees and employers navigate California’s leave laws…”  Kevin Kish – Director, DFEH

Kevin Kish, Director of DFEH, said, “DFEH is excited to use this technology to better assist employees and employers navigate California’s leave laws related to pregnancy disability and bonding with a new child.” Branden Butler, Assistant Deputy Director of Education and Outreach at DFEH, who oversaw the development of the app, said “We’re grateful to UCI Law and Neota Logic for partnering with our department to build this innovative and easy-to-use resource.”

The apps that our students worked on for the State of California are examples of how the legal profession and legal education are evolving to better meet the world’s needs.”  L. Song Richardson – Dean, UCI Law

Prof. Neil Sahota, a co-teacher of the students’ course, who previously worked at IBM on the development of Watson AI technology, said, “It was amazing to see what the students were able to do, especially since none had prior programming training. This app shows what law students and lawyers can do when they embrace technology tools.”

UCI Law Dean, L. Song Richardson, said “Education on AI and emerging technologies is woven throughout UCI Law’s curriculum so that all of our students understand how technology is impacting the legal profession and can increase access to justice in the digital era. The apps that our students have worked on for the State of California are examples of how the legal profession and legal education are evolving to better meet the world’s needs.”

Kevin Mulcahy of Neota Logic noted that “The team at DFEH does a great job with citizen communications and we at Neota are very pleased to be supporting them as they convey the benefits of the expanded leave law for new parents. And we’re glad to see this app deployed alongside California’s earlier advisor app on COVID rent relief, which is being run more than 10,000 times a week by Californians seeking tailored guidance.”

“We’re glad to see this app deployed alongside California’s earlier advisor app on COVID rent relief, which is being run more than 10,000 times a week by Californians seeking tailored guidance.”  Kevin Mulcahy – Neota Logic

About DFEH

The Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) is California’s civil rights agency, protecting Californians from discrimination in employment, housing, business establishments, and state-funded programs and services, as well as hate crimes and human trafficking. DFEH also enforces the California Family Rights Act. As the largest state civil rights agency in the US, DFEH is committed to making information on legal rights very accessible to members of the public. Learn more at www.dfeh.ca.gov.

About UCI Law 

University of California, Irvine School of Law (UCI Law) provides an innovative curriculum that prioritizes public service while demonstrating a commitment to diversity in the legal profession. The school is driven to improve local, national, and global communities by grappling with important issues and preparing students to succeed in the new digital era of law. Learn more at www.law.uci.edu and follow on Twitter @UCILaw and Facebook @UCIrvineLaw.

About Neota Logic

Neota Logic is a no-code software development toolset that enables legal professionals to create applications that replicate the thinking and actions of lawyers. By using Neota Logic, legal and business professionals can create software apps that conduct analysis, provide guidance, generate documents, and facilitate interaction between clients and professionals. Learn more at NeotaLogic.com.

Media Contacts

  • Rebecca Tear – tear@neotalogic.com
  • Mojgan Sherkat – msherkat@law.uci.edu

 

 

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Written by: Hasan Choudhary