Driverless Cars: Crashes, Damages, and Liability

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On March 18, 2018, Elaine Herzberg was struck and killed by a driverless car. As the first pedestrian fatality involving a fully autonomous vehicle, this presents an unprecedented liability challenge for American tort law.

What happens when someone is injured or killed in a car accident? Who is held responsible? And how does that change with a driverless car? Victor Schwartz, partner at Shook, Hardy & Bacon, explains the fault damage rules, suggesting that current liability rules will chill innovation unless they are changed to account for this emerging technology.

As always, the Federalist Society takes no position on particular legal or public policy issues; all expressions of opinion are those of the speaker.

Learn more about Victor Schwartz: https://www.shb.com/professionals/s/schwartz-victor

Related Links:

Insurance Journal: Liability and Legal Questions Follow Uber Autonomous Car Fatal Accident
https://www.insurancejournal.com/news/national/2018/03/20/483981.htm

Harvard Business Review: Driverless Cars Will Change Auto Insurance. Here’s How Insurers Can Adapt
https://hbr.org/2017/12/driverless-cars-will-change-auto-insurance-heres-how-insurers-can-adapt

Business Insider: Tesla is already showing how the insurance industry will be disrupted by self-driving cars
http://www.businessinsider.com/driverless-cars-could-negatively-affect-insurance-industry-2017-2

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