Laya is born into a Telugu family in Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh and attended Nirmala High School, Vijayawada. Her mother was a music teacher in Nirmala High School, Vijayawada and her father a doctor. During her school days, she was a state level Chess player. Later, she moved to Hyderabad and participated in multiple stage shows as a Classical Dancer, having performed in more than 50 stage shows. She has a bachelor's degree in Computer Science. She is married to Dr. Sri Ganesh Gorty on 14 June 2006 and currently lives in Los Angeles, California. The couple have a daughter Sloka Gorty and a son Vachan Gorty. Her father is the noted nephrologist Dr. Gopalakrishna Gandikota and she is the niece of well known philatelist, numismatist and former Indian Naval officer Cdr. Sri Rama Rao Gandikota.