What are the Current Laws Relevant to Self-Driving Cars?

With technology advancing and the world around us changing so fast, it was only a matter of time before cars started driving themselves. Yes, you heard that right, self-driving cars. These are the cars of the future available to us now! 

What are Self-Driving Cars?

Don’t let the name fool you, these are all types of vehicles including trucks and cars that will not need a human to control them. Humans are not required to ever take control of the vehicle for it to operate safely. You may also hear these vehicles referred to as driverless cars or autonomous cars. They use navigation systems, sensors, and special software to drive the vehicle without an operator. For more information about general law and lifestyle, visit lawalways. Keep in mind that there are a few different levels of autonomy. 

Levels of Autonomy 

There are five levels of autonomy. These levels start at zero. Zero is that all major systems will be controlled by a human operator. A level one would be there are items like cruise control and automatic braking. However, level five is where the car would be completely capable of driving itself without an operator. 


As of right now, there are not many laws in place with self-driving cars. All states that have legalized them have different laws. However, some of the most common laws are that the vehicle must have insurance. It also must be able to pass a road safety test and identify all possible threats including pedestrians. The person who has the vehicle must have photo identification or a driver’s license to have the vehicle on the road. 

All vehicles will need to be tested. Most states indicate that a driver is needed behind the wheel. The person who has this vehicle must have proof of their insurance and the insurance must be at least 5 million dollars. Keep in mind that all states have different laws. 

Keep in mind you must also have proof of registration for the vehicle as well. All states have different laws, this makes it difficult to understand. 


The vehicle that is considered self-driving must undergo a series of tests before it will hit the road. These tests may be done by your local DMV or another type of testing area. All vehicles will go through several tests including how they function. They must be able to stop for pedestrians, stop signs, and other important things. 


Self-driving cars are on the market and are being developed beyond our dreams. Many laws will differ from state to state. If you are thinking about getting a vehicle like this you should research your state’s specific laws about these cars. 

With technology advancing, these vehicles are becoming more and more popular and getting to know them is important. Adjusting to the times is something we all need to become accustomed to. Just make sure that you know all the rules that your state may have before you take this vehicle on the road. 

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  • Good point! There are not many laws in place with self-driving cars and owning one has its own pros and cons. Test drives are imperative, however, when driving, accidents are inevitable. As such, you need to always prioritise safety and follow traffic rules. Plus, understand the responsibilities of owning a self-driving car. Cheers!