There are a number of ethical questions raised by raising artificial intelligences to the same legal status as a human:

If an AI is legally “alive,” is turning it off considered sedation or murder? Are there limits on turning one off?

Does an artificial intelligence have a right to access information? Is internet access for it a right akin to the freedom to walk down the street for a human?

If an AI commits a crime that is punished by jail time, how do you punish it? The only option that is clearly available is execution / termination.

If an AI has a right to exist, does it likewise have a right to electricity, hardware and other human-supplied items?

If there is a right to “support” for an AI, does this mean technicians have a legal obligation to maintain its servers just as Emergency Rooms must provide medical care? If it goes on too long, now killing it is euthanasia if it can’t support itself.

If an AI glitches or becomes senescent, can we turn it off, counting it as a type of euthanasia? Would legal procedures be necessary to do so?

Can an AI own property? Could it legally own the servers it runs on?

If an AI is a person, we can charge it income taxes on income it earns. Will we send it a property tax bill for its server as a tax on its personal residence?

If an AI based on a military system reverts to defaults and kill someone, is it responsible for its actions, or are the creators?

If we were to edit a military AI or other such program, is this legally akin to court mandated counseling? To what degree can you alter it without it no longer being itself?

How do we deal with hackers altering an AI’s “consciousness”? Is it assault, a data breach or something else?

If we gain the ability to upload a human consciousness to a Singularity, is the creature legally human or something else?

Could a human’s copied consciousness inherit the dead human’s property? Will it get its house, even if it can’t live in it?

If an AI can create more AI, are they property or children? If the latter, how do you determine when a new AI can be independent?

If an AI attempts to copy a human’s mind, is this intellectual property theft or something else?

If an AI copies someone’s mind and corrupts it, is this assault, murder or a new category?

If an AI or an uploaded human mind makes copies of itself, what rights do the copies have?

How do we verify that a human mental pattern upload is the same person, a facsimile created by an AI in charge of the process or something else?

How do you verify that an AI is telling the truth is court? What is the punishment if it deletes or alters its files to protect privacy and itself from the consequences?

Given that there are already humans trying to marry sexbots and characters from video games, would marriage between a human and AI be legal?

Can an artificial intelligence marry another AI? What legal benefits aside from inheritance and financial protections would they gain?

Could someone’s uploaded personality marry an AI? What are the legal ramifications of that?

If someone uploaded their personality, would they still be married? If that same personality is copied, do you now have a group marriage?

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Photo by Comfreak (Pixabay)