Legal status of Robots “Personality and Responsibility” Highlights on the European Civil Law Rules in Robotics 2017
Prof. Mohammad Arfan Al Khatib
Professor of Civil Law – Law Department – Ahmed bin Mohammed Military College – Qatar
As widely known, the concept of «Robots» – «electronic persons» –is remarkably considered the most imaginative idea that came to reality with the rise of the concept of artificial intelligence (AI). Which became rather legally and ethically problematic, approaching its human counterpart, especially in terms of its current incarnation in the structure of “machine” stimulating the human body not only physically but also mentally! A question that raises two main issues on the Robots: First: the right of this new «object» to obtain a legal personality of its own. And second, the related nature of the civil legal responsibility, highlighting the legal rules governing such responsibility, and the legal reflexes that may occur accordingly.
Thus, this paper aims to shed light on the most philosophical and legal debates in the European society to determine the legal status of the “Robots” within, especially that the European Parliament has passed the European civil law rules in Robotics 2017, which discussed its legal personnel and the legal responsibility of its civil use in the European society. Therefore, the paper attempts to clarify the legal position of determining the status of “Robots” in modern civil legislation, particularly the French one, highlighting the legal argument on the existence of an independent legal personality for this “Robots” and the legislative need for it. In addition to the possibility for a special legal responsibility to exist and arise in relation to the “Robots”, and weather a new legal amendment is needed to include these two concepts into the French legal system. Or, the current civil legal rules remain sufficient to cover the various legal aspects related to Robots.
It is therefore expected for this research, examining such subject, to be subject to criticism and reactions both in support and opposition, especially since the doctrinal discussions has not yet been resolved, but rather still at the beginnings. Where the trends of research will be seen contrary to the traditional legal basics in both theories personnel, and responsibility as well, while others might consider it as method of development of both theories, placing this new object: the «Robots.»
To this end, the research has a clear and controversial dimension, and will challenge the understanding of the recipient, when attempting to proceed with a hypothesis to establish a doctrinal legal thought that somehow contradicts the general doctrine of the legal status of the “Robots” seen by many as irrelative. The research will also present a philosophical attempt to comprehend and evaluate these different opinions, to conclude a legal opinion, that we believe, is closest to the right, without any other legal opinion being confiscated.
Based on the above, the first problematic in this paper describes the status of the legal debate on the need to grant legal personality to the “Robots” in the first place, while the second one is related to the nature of the legal responsibility that can rise to this respect.
Keywords: Legal status of the Robots. Legal personality of the Robots. Legal responsibility for the Robots European civil law rules in Robotics.