Partner Pavan Agarwal and Associate Christopher Boll were quoted in the Automotive World article, “What are the biggest legal concerns linked to mobility megatrends?” and offered their perspectives on the most pressing legal issues facing the automotive industry.
The industry is facing challenges from everything to navigating the COVID-19 pandemic to simultaneously preparing for connected, autonomous, shared and electric (CASE) mobility. The demands of technological developments, supply chain management and operational flexibility are hefty, and many players are leaning more heavily on legal advice then they have in decades.
“The legal space is fluid and there’s always room for new things and novel concepts to pop up,” Boll said. “Much of what goes on here will depend on what kind of autonomous vehicle (AV) technology becomes dominant and how it operates. That will largely determine what legal concerns come out of it.”
Fully autonomous driving presents another thorny issues, Boll said. “This will remain an open question and a key point of discussion among all the players in the space. Regulators and lawmakers, automakers and technology companies are all looking into this. We will start to see more input from insurers as they attempt to figure out how to properly allocate risk associated with AV technology.”
Legal advice is also increasingly being sought around AV intellectual property (IP) protection. Agarwal noted that he is working with companies to help determine the most appropriate IP strategy. His advice is changing in light of the emergence of artificial intelligence (AI) in the automotive ecosystem. “AI has been truly integral to the development of AVs,” he said. As it becomes more prevalent, automakers and suppliers may need to become more strategic in how they protect IP. They may choose to focus on the core AI algorithm or the application of AI to a specific area, such as the autonomous driving functionality.