European Union institutions are currently studying the regulatory intervention needed to face liability problems solicited by the use of autonomous artificial agents, whose unforeseeable actions may result in damage for their users or third parties. This paper intends to analyze some of the solutions proposed, by putting in relation – also from a historical perspective – the possibility of widening producers’ or users’ strict liability for actions by artificial agents even when they are not fully predictable and that of extending the status of legal actor to some of these artificial agents, so as to attribute the damaging fact directly to them.
The purpose of this article is to analyse virtual currencies, with specific regard to Bitcoins, in light of a specific human right, the right to privacy. In the first part, this contribution will reflect on the effectiveness of the Fifth European Union Anti-Money Laundering Directive (V AML Directive) in ‘regulating’ the exchange between fiat and virtual currencies for the purpose of anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing. In the second part, it will explore whether the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is applicable or not to the virtual currencies network.
This paper analyzes the social effectiveness of fines (sanctions) and awards (liability) where accident risks are influenced by decisions made by both the enterprise and the employees of the enterprise (individuals). The regulator observes a proportion of accidents and the safety decision of the individual can be contractible or non-contractible for the enterprise. All sanction regimes yield the first best, given contractible individual care. The liability regimes, however, produce sub-optimal solutions. Given non-contractible individual care, the combined use of an individual sanction and an enterprise sanction (joint use) produces the first best. The exclusive use of an individual sanction produces the first best if the enterprise does not suffer any direct harm. The exclusive use of an enterprise sanction does not, however, produce the first best. If both decision-makers are solvent and have similar liability probabilities, then individual and enterprise liability do equally well under contractible individual care. Individual liability does, however, best for non-contractible individual care.
When parties are risk-averse and therefore take out insurance, the efficiency of a tort rule depends on how well the insurance contracts govern incentives, risk allocation and transaction costs under the rule. This article presents two overlooked or discarded advantages of the rule of negligence over strict liability, which appear when insurance contracts are incomplete due to ex-ante transaction or ex-post verification costs. One advantage arises because of a legal impediment under strict liability: insurers cannot exempt coverage for all acts of simple negligence. Instead, the insurer must, at a cost, precisely specify each act for which coverage is excluded. Such specification can be prohibitively costly when there are many acts and many contingencies. These transaction costs, or the inefficient risk allocation associated with a deductible, are avoided under the negligence rule, where under idealized conditions the injurer can simply take due care and need not take out insurance. The other advantage of the negligence rule is that it provides incentives for the victim to bring forward information about the injurer’s acts. The victim has little incentive to convey such information under strict liability, whereas the victim’s insurer may elicit it, e. g. by not covering the victim’s loss fully.