What to Do When Your Teenager Has a Car Accident

Are parents liable for their children’s car accidents?

This depends on your state, insurer, and the specific circumstances of the accident. To ensure your teen is prepared before they get behind the wheel, make sure they have a valid license, adequate insurance coverage, and a solid understanding of the rules of the road.

How can you help if your teen has a car accident?

It’s important to educate your teen beforehand so they know what to do in the event of an accident. Teach them the steps to take, and consider writing them down on a notepad for your teen to keep in the glove compartment. Additionally, always keep a copy of the car registration and insurance information in the car for easy access.

Even with preparation, accidents can happen. If you receive a call from your teen about an accident, follow these steps:

  1. Provide emotional support: Reassure your teen and help them stay calm. If possible, meet them at the scene to guide them through the process.
  2. Ensure a police report is filed: Advise your teen to inform the police of any accident involving another person or their property. A police report can be crucial for insurance claims.
  3. Contact the insurer: Have your teen call their insurance company, preferably from the scene if safe, to initiate the auto insurance claim process. They will also need to exchange insurance information with the other driver for the insurance companies to collaborate.
  4. Get the car to an approved repair shop: If the car is damaged, the insurer can recommend a nearby shop, and they will work with the professionals there to obtain an estimate. If the car isn’t drivable, have it towed to the shop.

Tips for a teenager’s first accident

Car accidents can be scary for anyone, especially teens. Here are some additional tips to help your teen remain calm and take the right steps:

  • Never leave the scene of an accident, even if it’s minor. Doing so may be considered a hit-and-run, which carries serious consequences.
  • Call the police and gather your license, registration, and insurance information for when they arrive.
  • If another driver is involved, check on their well-being and exchange insurance details, but refrain from discussing the accident further until the police arrive.
  • Avoid signing anything at the scene, and wait to speak to the police.

Get a quote

Ensure your teen driver is protected with the right auto insurance coverage. Get a quote today and give yourself peace of mind.

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