Insights on how to handle liability issues with driverless cars

by | Sep 13, 2014 | Car Accidents

The newest offerings from Cadillac, Mercedes Benz, BMW and other luxury automakers will include some of the elements that will eventually be autonomous vehicles. These cars are not expected to hit the road until the end of the decade at the earliest, but the introduction of this technology brings a host of new legal issues that have yet to be addressed.

One of these questions is who could, or should, be held responsible if an autonomous vehicle is involved in an accident. Essentially, will the question be viewed as a products liability issue or a negligence claim? 

A report produced this year by the Brookings Institute could provide some insight regarding the answer. Like many other legal issues that are introduced, our legal system can adapt to answer the questions that will likely arise, but future liability issues are likely to be resolved by using the following standards:

Federal law should not preempt state law – Essentially, each state should be allowed to create laws to resolve liability disputes according to their own traditions and standards. With auto accidents, states are generally better equipped to handle these problems.

Federal standards may be borne from commercial interstate travel  If uniform safety standards are implemented, they should first apply to commercial vehicles that travel between states. So like current safety standards (i.e. prohibition on use of electronic devices, safety inspections, maintenance of travel logs), a deviation from them may be considered as a breach of the duty to use reasonable care in the maintenance autonomous driving functions. 

Archives

Don’t Wait. Get Your Free Consultation Now

findlaw-network

FREE Injured Worker’s Guide

Book Cover: The Injured Worker's Guide to Compensation Law in Pennsylvania by Kristopher Januzzi Esquire

The Injured Worker’s Guide to Compensation Law in Pennsylvania by Attorney Kristopher Januzzi is available for free!

Request A Copy Now

Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum
Super Lawyers
2015 Litigator Awards | Ranked Top 1% of Lawyers
Avvo Rating | 10.0 Superb | Top Attorney Personal Injury
Million Dollar Advocates Forum
Pennsylvania Association for Justice
Pennsylvania Bar Association | Your Other Partner
Better Business Bureau Accredited Business | Click for review
The National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Trial Lawyers
Loading...
Certificate of Membership This is to certify that Adam Wolfe is an Active Member of The National Trial Lawyers Top 100 - Civil Plaintiff
The National Top 100 Trial Lawyers