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Jacobs & Dow, LLC


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In Personal Injury, Criminal Law And Other Legal Matters

How Connecticut Personal Injury Claims Can Shift Due To Driverless Cars

Both passengers and drivers should understand the future of accidents involving automated cars.

Even though driverless cars have yet to become commonplace on Connecticut roadways, it is never too early to think about how their existence can lead to a shift in auto accidents and personal injury claims. Get a head start on learning about who is likely to be at fault if you are ever injured while riding in a car without a human driver behind the wheel.

Human error will take a backseat

Simply put, when an accident occurs and there is no one behind the wheel, the blame will most likely be placed on the shoulders of car manufacturers as well as the automated vehicle’s software developers. This also means that there is a strong possibility that driverless car manufacturers will have to purchase their own liability insurance rather than have drivers buy their own coverage. All of this adds up to a shift in both the insurance industry as well as the car manufacturing industry.

The wheels are already in motion

Another reason to start thinking about insurance claims and blame when it comes to autos that drive themselves is that accidents are already starting to crop up. In 2016, a partially-automated Tesla car accident resulted in a man’s death when the vehicle hit a trailer because it did not stop in time. In the end, the manufacturer was not found to be at fault because the vehicle was not fully automated; the man could have taken control of the wheel before the accident occurred. Just like phones, computers and tablets perform better and differently from each other, the same is bound to be true when it comes to automated vehicles. This not only means experiences will vary, but that there are sure to be different bugs and malfunctions across different software and manufacturers.

The burden of proof remains the same

Because there might still be medical bills involved in an accident no matter whether there is or is not a driver behind the wheel, victims still want to seek damages to cover their medical costs, which means building a case. The injured party has to prove the driverless car is faulty, either through the manufacturer’s or the software creator’s fault. Victims might also need to show how having a human driver could have avoided the accident in the first place.

No matter who was or was not behind the wheel when you were involved in an accident in Connecticut, you owe it to yourself to know your rights. Reach out to a lawyer to build your case and give yourself the best chance of receiving the compensation you deserve.