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How is your insurance handling "autonomy"?

S4WRXTTCS

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2015
5,726
6,876
Snohomish, WA
That's not obvious at all.

It's not even necessarily true.

In some states the the automated driving system, when engaged, is legally the operator.

In some states the owner is legally responsible for any legal violations of the vehicle, even on an L4 or L5 vehicle. (Even if he's not in the car BTW).

In some states the owner (or his agent) is legally responsible for SOME things in an accident (like reporting if they hit an unattended vehicle) and on the hook legally if they fail to, though not necessarily the accident itself.

In some states they appear to just entirely YOLO it by including language like

"LIABILITY FOR A CRASH INVOLVING AN AUTOMATED DRIVING
SYSTEM DRIVING A MOTOR VEHICLE THAT IS NOT UNDER HUMAN CONTROL
IS DETERMINED IN ACCORDANCE WITH APPLICABLE STATE LAW, FEDERAL
LAW, OR COMMON LAW. "


And then not actually including any state law to govern the situation at all liability-wise.

My approach was to simply it all down to just a person in an L4/L5 vehicle, and what responsibility they have when they are the driver and what responsibility they have as the passenger while it does the driving.

No responsibility or liability can be assigned to an individual in an L4/L5 vehicle while it's autonomous driving mode. This is assuming the individual can't mess with settings that would impact the legality of the drive, and they don't mess with the controls while its driving.

Now sure if they are the owner there are responsibilities that come with that position, but that's different than simply being in the vehicle.

That isn't to say that what you brought up isn't potentially hugely important. Obviously if I as the owner had responsibility for an Tesla FSD accident I would think twice about signing up for the Tesla fleet network.
 

gearchruncher

Active Member
Sep 20, 2016
2,510
3,318
Seattle, WA
No responsibility or liability can be assigned to an individual in an L4/L5 vehicle while it's autonomous driving mode. This is assuming the individual can't mess with settings that would impact the legality of the drive, and they don't mess with the controls while its driving.
Tell that to North Carolina, who as one of the first states to handle this, specifically states the liability is assigned to the registered OWNER of an autonomous vehicle.


(d) Registered Owner Responsible for Moving Violations. – The person in whose name the fully autonomous vehicle is registered is responsible for a violation of this Chapter that is considered a moving violation, if the violation involves a fully autonomous vehicle.
 

Knightshade

Well-Known Member
Jul 31, 2017
13,167
21,844
NC
No responsibility or liability can be assigned to an individual in an L4/L5 vehicle while it's autonomous driving mode.

You keep saying this and it keeps not being true.

"The car maker said I didn't have to drive" isn't a legal defense if your states law says you are still responsible for the car breaking the law.

The SAE isn't gonna pay your bail either.


State law overrides whatever you want to tell the cop is in J3016.
 

Economite

Member
Dec 19, 2016
490
589
Los Angeles
That isn't to say that what you brought up isn't potentially hugely important. Obviously if I as the owner had responsibility for an Tesla FSD accident I would think twice about signing up for the Tesla fleet network.

At this point, the Tesla Network is little more than a couple sentences that Elon put in a web marketing effort. It doesn't exist; and who knows how much effort Tesla has even put into it.

In any case, just because Tesla might want to start something like the Tesla Network doesn't mean that the laws in all fifty states are set up to allow it to work. And Elon's tweets don't override state law.
 
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stopcrazypp

Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2007
10,974
6,081
I was really hoping some other people would look at their policies and see if they mention autonomy at all instead of just telling me to get "a better insurer." Pemco is considerd one of the most consumer friendly insurers around.

This is in the future for all insurers, they can't insure software errors that they can't analyze and can change with a single update. How would you set your rates for a human if they could suddenly have their brain replaced with that of a 16 year old kid?

Open your policy and do a search. Does yours mention autonomy or self driving at all?
To answer the question, State Farm's policy does not mention anything of the sort. The only major amendment they made recently is to exclude ride sharing.
 

S4WRXTTCS

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2015
5,726
6,876
Snohomish, WA
You keep saying this and it keeps not being true.

"The car maker said I didn't have to drive" isn't a legal defense if your states law says you are still responsible for the car breaking the law.

The SAE isn't gonna pay your bail either.


State law overrides whatever you want to tell the cop is in J3016.

It's not my fault if I'm riding in an L4/L5 Waymo, and it breaks the law.
It's not my fault in my friends perfectly legal, and approved L4/L5 vehicle breaks the law while I'm riding in it.

The entire point of autonomous driving is to take the driving responsibility out of the hands of the people in the car. So there can't be responsibility or liability simply for being a passenger in a self-driving vehicle.

What you're actually doing is pointing out a situation that has to be ironed out before L4/L5 vehicles are available for sale to the public. In the case of Waymo there is no mistaking the responsible party because the passenger is paying a fare, and isn't allowed in the drivers seat.

But, in the case of a Tesla Fleet vehicle there is no way of knowing who was doing the driving. So there needs to be a mechanism for that.
 
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S4WRXTTCS

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2015
5,726
6,876
Snohomish, WA
At this point, the Tesla Network is little more than a couple sentences that Elon put in a web marketing effort. It doesn't exist; and who knows how much effort Tesla has even put into it.

In any case, just because Tesla might want to start something like the Tesla Network doesn't mean that the laws in all fifty states are set up to allow it to work. And Elon's tweets don't override state law.

It's not just a couple sentences if you've been following the history of FSD from the start.

It's just as important, and just as mythical as FSD itself.

What we like doing on this section of the forum is debating theoretical what if's even if we known full well that Tesla will never achieve L4/L5 self driving with the existing FSD HW.
 

S4WRXTTCS

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2015
5,726
6,876
Snohomish, WA
Tell that to North Carolina, who as one of the first states to handle this, specifically states the liability is assigned to the registered OWNER of an autonomous vehicle.


The response your quoting from is when I specifically said just a person behind the wheel.

This simplified it because there was no question of ownership. I was purposely excluding that.

The existing laws are likely being written with fleet vehicles in mind when the fleet owner is of the likes of Waymo, Cruise, etc. Where it's not even taking into consideration privately owned autonomous vehicles. Where the owner has no control over the performance of the system.
 

gearchruncher

Active Member
Sep 20, 2016
2,510
3,318
Seattle, WA
What we like doing on this section of the forum is debating theoretical what if's even if we known full well that Tesla will never achieve L4/L5 self driving with the existing FSD HW.
But this particular topic is fully applicable to L3. If Tesla tells you that you can look at your phone while on a rural highway and it will warn you if you need attention, that is absolutely an autonomy mode where they have possible liability and your insurance carrier will want to know about it.

Given Elon has already called autopilot "superhuman" on the highway, is it actually unreasonable that in some limited area Tesla will allow this? GM already has L3 systems out there.
 

gearchruncher

Active Member
Sep 20, 2016
2,510
3,318
Seattle, WA
Where the owner has no control over the performance of the system.
Right, and this is a discussion about private insurance, and the issues they would face with trying to insure private cars, which they had no control over the performance of the system, so they would have zero way to evaluate risk.

Hence the hilarious "go get another company" as if this isn't going to be yet another massive blocker to Tesla releasing L3+ systems, and that insurance companies won't very quickly add exclusions once it comes close to existing.
 

S4WRXTTCS

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2015
5,726
6,876
Snohomish, WA
But this particular topic is fully applicable to L3. If Tesla tells you that you can look at your phone while on a rural highway and it will warn you if you need attention, that is absolutely an autonomy mode where they have possible liability and your insurance carrier will want to know about it.

Given Elon has already called autopilot "superhuman" on the highway, is it actually unreasonable that in some limited area Tesla will allow this? GM already has L3 systems out there.
GM's Supercruise is not L3.

It's a hands free L2 system where all the responsibility is still on the driver.

There is no commercially available L3 vehicle available in the world at this time. There is only a pilot run of 100 or so leased Hondas in Japan that are L3 so it's going to be interesting to see what comes out of that experiment.

My understanding is if the Honda system messes up while in L3 mode that Honda will take fully responsibility over it. Their L3 system is very limited in speed, and conditions it will operate in. It has to follow the SAE Level rules for L3 where it gives a certain amount of time for the hand off.
 
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S4WRXTTCS

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2015
5,726
6,876
Snohomish, WA
Right, and this is a discussion about private insurance, and the issues they would face with trying to insure private cars, which they had no control over the performance of the system, so they would have zero way to evaluate risk.

Hence the hilarious "go get another company" as if this isn't going to be yet another massive blocker to Tesla releasing L3+ systems, and that insurance companies won't very quickly add exclusions once it comes close to existing.

I think the entire point of Tesla insurance is to allow consistent switching of who's doing the driving without worrying about which insurance company covers an accident. Plus they have access to driver monitoring data, and car data. So they can better optimize the pricing based not only on the customers driving, but how recent their FSD HW Level was.

If they bundled insurance with an FSD subscription I could see a lot of people going for it.

I haven't seen anything that suggest that Tesla is at all interested in L3.

I think most companies will simply skip L3 aside from maybe a handful of "traffic assist only" systems that aren't really worth discussion.
 

stopcrazypp

Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2007
10,974
6,081
I think the entire point of Tesla insurance is to allow consistent switching of who's doing the driving without worrying about which insurance company covers an accident. Plus they have access to driver monitoring data, and car data. So they can better optimize the pricing based not only on the customers driving, but how recent their FSD HW Level was.

If they bundled insurance with an FSD subscription I could see a lot of people going for it.

I haven't seen anything that suggest that Tesla is at all interested in L3.

I think most companies will simply skip L3 aside from maybe a handful of "traffic assist only" systems that aren't really worth discussion.
Yeah, Honda limiting their fleet to only 100 and lease only is obviously a way to decrease legal exposure.

Audi's lawyers already called to halt their L3 effort due to the possible costs to the company for taking legal responsibility while the system is running in L3 mode.

The couple second buffer is likely the point of contention. Given enough volume, there will definitely be legal fights over how many seconds is appropriate and they have to factor in cases also where the "driver" does not respond within the given time period. A bunch of companies already said if you are going to bother developing the tech to give x-amount of seconds of buffer, might as well go all the way and have the system be able fail safely even if driver does not respond (in which case it becomes L4).
 
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M3BlueGeorgia

Active Member
Dec 10, 2018
1,400
1,283
Atlanta, GA
That's the same way I read. We can argue that Autopilot is not autonomous but what counts is the insurance policy and how it defines what to cover.

For its definition, the only covered automation tasks are AEB and TACC.

That means other tasks are not such as:

Auto Lane Change
Autosteer
(Navigation, City Streets include those above too so they definitely not covered)
Simple Summon (in and out of your garage)
Smart Summon
Autopark...

That policy is too restrictive. I would get another one that covers everything even with those above tasks.
Fortunately Tesla has made legal filings saying the current software isn't L3 or L4 or L5.
 

gearchruncher

Active Member
Sep 20, 2016
2,510
3,318
Seattle, WA
I think the entire point of Tesla insurance is to allow consistent switching of who's doing the driving without worrying about which insurance company covers an accident. Plus they have access to driver monitoring data, and car data. So they can better optimize the pricing based not only on the customers driving, but how recent their FSD HW Level was.

If they bundled insurance with an FSD subscription I could see a lot of people going for it.
If you're going to have to get your car, FSD SW, and insurance all from the same company, just lease it all. Who would buy a car outright, then do a monthly sub on FSD/insurance? That company could just decide to stop selling you FSD and make your whole original purchase worthless (or worth much less). I would never buy a car from a company where I could only buy their tires, and I'll never buy a car where the company can legally devalue it after I own it. I'd lease that all day though if the lease agreement specified the functions guaranteed under the lease.

I haven't seen anything that suggest that Tesla is at all interested in L3.
This would be it's own interesting discussion on this forum. The idea that Tesla will never do L3, and will go from "driver fully responsible" to "we can get you basically anywhere without any attention" all in one step sure isn't what I have been assuming. Seems so easy (and useful) to hit L3 on the highway with a driver as a delayed backup compared to handling all the surface street issues.
 

gearchruncher

Active Member
Sep 20, 2016
2,510
3,318
Seattle, WA
Fortunately Tesla has made legal filings saying the current software isn't L3 or L4 or L5.
By "legal filings" to you mean the informal discussions they had with the CA DMV?
My insurance doesn't call out L1-L5 in any way, so I'm not sure why my WA insurance would be beholden to what Tesla told a CA DMV employee, and that they for sure would not consider some of the things Tesla does to cross into their definition of "autonomy."
 

M3BlueGeorgia

Active Member
Dec 10, 2018
1,400
1,283
Atlanta, GA
By "legal filings" to you mean the informal discussions they had with the CA DMV?
My insurance doesn't call out L1-L5 in any way, so I'm not sure why my WA insurance would be beholden to what Tesla told a CA DMV employee, and that they for sure would not consider some of the things Tesla does to cross into their definition of "autonomy."
Telsa provided filings, and those are more legally relevant than their marketing materials.
 

gearchruncher

Active Member
Sep 20, 2016
2,510
3,318
Seattle, WA
Telsa provided filings
Again, are you referring to the CA DMV stuff? There were zero "filings" in that situation. Those were emails and notes between Tesla and the CA DMV, informally discussing their system, and explaining that Tesla does not feel they need to register because they are not L3. This does not constitute an agreement by the regulator, nor an official filing by Tesla. In fact, the CA DMV is investigating Tesla over their advertising of features and how it does not align with what they told the DMV internally.


These documents were only uncovered by FOIA I should point out (legal filings with a regulator are public documents, not things you need to go FOIA), and we shouldn't need to rely on handy FOIA documents in case we need to try and prove to our insurer that the system we were using was L2 autonomy, but not L3 autonomy, and you meant L3, right?

..And again, even if it is a legal filing, that doesn't mean what CA decides applies in WA. There are no federal standards or filings here.
 

Knightshade

Well-Known Member
Jul 31, 2017
13,167
21,844
NC
It's not my fault if I'm riding in an L4/L5 Waymo, and it breaks the law.

Nope. But Waymo might be depending on the laws in the state.

(even though they didn't build the car itself)

On the other hand, if you're in an L4/L5 car you own and it breaks the law it is your fault even in L4/L5 mode in some states.

Because again, this depends on what each states law actually says not the SAE levels.

SAE levels have no legal standing whatsoever unless they're specifically cited in said laws (which some states DO do, but many others do not)
 

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