Automated Vehicle Innovation

The transportation sector is undergoing a fundamental transformation that is creating significant opportunities and challenges for businesses across the economy. Technological innovation is displacing long-standing conventions in the automotive, trucking, and aviation spaces, and opening the door for the deployment of connected and automated transportation systems (such as autonomous or "self-driving" vehicles), connected devices for the Internet of Things, and countless other disruptive technologies designed to revolutionize consumer mobility and commercial freight delivery.

The pace of transformation means policymakers and enforcement officials must grapple with these industries on issues of safety, insurance, cybersecurity, privacy, and many others, as new business models challenge existing laws and regulations at the federal, state, and local levels. Through it all, the legal liabilities and regulatory compliance risks for businesses continue to rise.

Venable's Automated Vehicle Innovation industry is positioned to counsel clients in these exciting and challenging times. Led by David Strickland (who was appointed by President Obama and confirmed by the U.S. Senate to lead the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration from 2010 to 2014) and partners with decades of private sector legal experience, this focused practice group works with clients to navigate legal and regulatory risks, defend against enforcement actions and private litigation, build industry coalitions, and promote policy solutions through engagement with Congress, the administration, and the various sector-specific agencies. The group does all this with a keen eye for optimizing clients' ability to sustain robust growth in these emerging markets and this evolving landscape.

Our team has a strong understanding of the legal and policy issues facing the transportation sector and is well positioned to deliver solutions for clients in this exciting new era. Specifically, we can counsel clients in the following areas:

  • Communications
  • Consumer protection
  • Design and manufacturing
  • Federal and state industry regulation
  • Intellectual property
  • Infrastructure
  • Liability
  • Privacy and data security
  • Safety regulation

Industry Focus

  • Insurance companies
  • Original equipment manufacturers
  • Ridesharing companies
  • Software developers

Government Experience

Over two dozen Venable attorneys experienced in innovative transportation matters, including several who have served in government positions, such as: 

  • Administrator, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
  • U.S. Secretary of Transportation
  • U.S. Senator, Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation
  • Chairman, Federal Interagency Committee for Emergency Medical Services


  • Transport Law Firm of the Year in Washington, DC, Global Law Experts, 2014 and 2016