What to Do if Your Teen Driver Is in an Accident
No parent wants to get a call saying their teenager was in a car accident. Unfortunately, though, teenagers are one of the most at-risk age groups for wrecks.
In 2017, 7% of all car accident deaths involved young drivers (ages 15 to 19). There’s no doubt that a young driver is an inexperienced driver and may not know how to react under stressful road conditions or to another driver’s recklessness.
At Steinger, Greene & Feiner, we have helped numerous families receive compensation relating to an accident with a young driver. Just because your child is inexperienced at the wheel does not mean you are responsible for someone else’s loss of control, poor driving or consumption of alcohol. Not every accident involving a teen is the teen’s fault, and it’s important that you – and your child – know how to handle the unexpected.
What Your Teen Driver Needs to Know
The basics of what to do at an accident scene are the same for teens and adults. But teens are less experienced and often afraid of what will happen, meaning they are more likely to say or do something that could cost you later.
Of course, the first priority at any accident scene is medical attention for anyone who’s injured. Beyond that, it’s important to get the other driver’s information – but don’t give out more of your own than you have to. Never accept blame for the accident or apologize. This is a vital lesson for teenagers, especially if the other driver is older.
It’s natural to apologize when something goes wrong, but it can be seen as an admission of guilt. It’s important for your child to stay calm and level-headed and let the police decide who caused the accident.
Making notes about the accident is also helpful. As soon afterward as possible, record the details of what happened, what was said, and what the other driver told your teenager. These details will become foggy over time but could be vital to getting fair compensation.
Know Your Rights
Above all, never assume you are without options. If your teen is involved in a car accident, talk to a car accident attorney immediately. They can help you get what you’re entitled to and ensure you don’t get stuck footing the bill for someone else’s mistake.
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