To what extent is the legal system ready to deal with the legal issues associated with artificial intelligence?
Maltese law already contains various concepts which can be used to compensate for damage caused by AI machines. Apart from product liability, which may be made use of by the consumer who would have purchased the AI machine, should such machine cause the consumer damage, it is highly likely that tort law, under the Maltese Civil Code, Chapter 16 of the Laws of Malta (the ‘Maltese Civil Code’) may also be applied in various other instances to allocate responsibility in the case of damage caused by artificial intelligence.
Further to this, Maltese law provides for indirect liability of employers, parents, proprietors of animals or buildings, which could probably provide for an adequate basis should it be determined that specific legal provisions regulating AI would need to be inserted into Maltese law, since such approaches of indirect liability provided for in the Maltese Civil Code are generally only applied exclusively to the specific scenarios set out in the law.
Moreover, should legal personality be applied to AI machines, as is done for companies, this would create a potential scenario where the AI machine itself could possibly be sued for any damage it could have caused to an individual.
Should the legal personality concept never be applied to AI machines, the most likely scenario envisaged would be that Malta would have to update its legal system and adapt the existing legal framework to the issues that AI brings with it; in particular amendments to Maltese tort law.
While Norway does have a strong IT-environment, its legal system is not currently equipped to deal with the potential legal issues that would arise out of AI.
For instance, the current laws and regulations relating to the processing of personal data does not necessarily pose any hurdles on the analysis of pseudonymised and aggregated data by AI. However, the details surrounding such analysis remains unclear, hereunder the breadth and traceability of the data collected, the determination of who has used the data, the right of access, or the requirements of pseudonymisation.
Furthermore, the debate on the allocation of ownership rights of such data is still ongoing in Norway, hereunder whether such rights shall befall the party collecting the data or the party conducting the analysis.
Lastly, contract and torts law is unequipped to deal with potential issues of product liability of autonomous vehicles or robots, or malfunctions or malice in the provision of health services by AI and robot diagnostics.
While it is possible to deal with legal issues with AI using general principles of law in Turkey, revision in legislation is required to be in a better position.