Michael Bell


Michael Bell is the Director of Sullivan on Comp, a leading digital resource on California workers’ compensation law for attorneys and adjusters. Recently, Bell spearheaded the creation and launch of ChatSOC, leveraging Sullivan on Comp’s extensive content to provide answers to users’ questions about California workers’ compensation law.


From Treatise to Tech: The Development of ChatSOC, an AI Research Assistant


At Sullivan on Comp, the idea of using AI to enable users to ask questions about our legal content was an obvious opportunity. However, the path to implementation was not always clear; often, we could only see one or two steps ahead. Yet, we persisted and launched ChatSOC, an AI assistant that has been tremendously well-received.

Initially, we experimented with training an open-source AI model but the results were disappointing. We then shifted to a retrieval-augmented generation model, which was significantly more effective. Critical aspects of our success were finding the right developer and creating robust test data.

In this session, I will not only walk through the development of ChatSOC but also highlight actionable insights you can apply in your own projects. Expect to learn about overcoming technical challenges, making strategic decisions, and managing project costs effectively. This talk will equip attendees with the knowledge to navigate AI project hurdles and understand the investment and value such technologies can bring.