DoNotPay, the Facebook Messenger chatbot that has assisted over 200,000 people in challenging unfair parking fines, has followed through with an update that now helps fill in an immigration application in the US and Canada. For those in the UK, it helps them apply for asylum support.
The chatbot works by asking users a series of questions in plain English to determine if they're eligible for asylum protection under international law and which application should be filled out. It then takes down the necessary details to automatically fill out the corresponding application. Once the application form is filled and sent out the details are deleted from the chatbot’s end.
Navigating through the asylum protection process is more complicated than it sounds, so developer Joshua Browder spent months talking to lawyers, making sure it got things right. He says his hope is that DoNotPay will "allow anyone to have a right to safety, regardless of the ability to afford a lawyer."
The service is currently available through Facebook Messenger only. Browder admits there are some limitations to this platform, such as the lack of end-to-end encryption for chatbots and the fact that it’s not as popular as WhatsApp internationally. Aside from assistance with asylum protection and parking tickets, DoNotPay can also sort out issues regarding housing, delayed flights and payment protection insurance.