Do you remember the day you became a driver? I personally can recall the singular feeling of getting behind the wheel for the first time. The independence. The power. The joy. It’s one of the most memorable milestones in a young person’s life.
A driver’s license means total freedom for a 16-year-old, but necessarily for his or her parents. After that trip to the DMV, Mom and Dad may be relieved of their chauffeuring duties, but they’ll never be free from worry—at least not for the foreseeable future.
I’m not a magician, so I can’t wipe those worries away, sadly. But as a parent and a Memphis car crash lawyer, I can arm you with the facts you’ll need to get through this particularly harrowing rite of passage. Here are three tips to keep in mind.
1. Your insurance rates will likely go up.
You’ve probably already heard that insuring your teen driver can be costly—78% more costly than what you pay for insurance now, based on some studies.
Annual car insurance premiums skyrocket after a teen driver joins the policy, and for a very good reason. They are riskier from the provider’s perspective, which is understandable: according to the CDC, in 2016, young people between 15-16 represented 6.5% of America’s population and accounted for the 8.4% of the total costs of car accident-related injuries in the country.
Quick tip: Your current provider may not be the best option. Once your policy is up, shop around. You might be surprised by how much you’ll save from switching companies.
2. The risks of texting while driving are real, and they are serious.
While I can remember getting behind the wheel at 16, I cannot identify with all of the distractions today’s young drivers have to contend with. For all the benefits of technology, it has an adverse effect on driving.
Though texting while driving is illegal in many states, many teens have engaged in this risky behavior. According to recent studies, 34% of 16- and 17-year-olds text behind the wheel, an activity that increases their risk of crashing by 23 times.
The best way to combat risks like texting while driving—along with driving under the influence, or distracted driving more broadly—is by talking candidly with your teen about the potential dangers, and leading by example yourself. Which brings me to my third and final point…
3. A new license does not mean the end of Driver’s Ed.
Responsible driving is an ongoing pursuit. It requires more practice than you can get from a behind-the-wheel training class. A great way to instill healthy driving behaviors in your teen is by having open conversations about risks like distracted driving, speeding, and using alcohol. Set a strong example, and try some of these tips from the National Safety Council. (By the way, while your teen’s safety is of course the biggest priority, a stellar driving record can only help when it comes to those pesky insurance rates I mentioned above.)
Get Legal Help From a Memphis Car Crash Lawyer After an Accident
I’ve been working as a Memphis car crash lawyer for quite some time. Our lawyers are very familiar with the physical and emotional toll a car accident brings. We will fight for you or your loved one, to ensure that you get the compensation you need and deserve.
Contact us online today or call 901-327-1212 to speak in person with a Memphis car crash lawyer you can trust with your cases.