I’m back from my vacation, and one article that I found interesting upon my return was Mark Gestfield’s paper on tort liability and self-driving cars. He makes many sensible suggestions about how produce liability law should apply to autonomous vehicles, how NHTSA should regulate the industry in conjunction with state law, and what should happen if self-driving gets hacked and an accident results.
The one area that I find fascinating about the future (at least with respect to law) is how juries will respond when a human driver and a self-driving car collide. You would think that the answer in most of these cases will be that the human driver was at fault. Nevertheless, you can imagine that juries will be more sympathetic to the human driver (or more skeptical of the self-driving technology) than the experts. On the other hand, insurance companies might simply adopt the view that the human driver was presumptively at fault in that sort of case, which would have significant implications for litigation. Anyway, the paper is worth your time.