While you were very happy the day your teenage son or daughter got their driver’s license, you were also hoping the time would never come when they would be involved in a car accident. However, now that it has happened, you are probably wondering how things will proceed moving forward. Though you may have many thoughts racing through your mind simultaneously, it is important to remain calm and exercise good judgment. To do so, follow these steps after your teenage driver’s accident.
Don’t Play the Blame Game
When a car accident takes place, it is imperative your teenage driver not make the mistake of saying anything that lets police or others place the blame on them for the accident occurring. Should they say “I’m sorry” when talking to the police or the other driver, these words will be construed as them admitting the accident was their fault?
Get the Details
If your teenager is not seriously injured, they should take the minutes following their accident to capture as many details as possible about the accident. These should include damage to the vehicles, traffic lights or signs near the accident scene, any visible injuries they or others may have suffered, and other important information. Once you have this information in your possession, speak to an auto accident attorney who specializes in car accident cases involving teenage drivers.
Get Medical Treatment
Even if your teenage driver swears they are fine, do not let them refuse medical treatment under any circumstances. This is crucial since injuries such as concussions, herniated discs, or whiplash often don’t display symptoms for hours or even days after an accident. Whether they are transported to a hospital or you take them to your family doctor the next day, get medical treatment immediately.
Contact a Car Accident Attorney
Speaking with an auto accident attorney is a commonly missed step when young people get in car accidents. However, it is an important step to ensure that you get medical care as well as insurance claims. Unfortunately, it is typical for those involved in the accident to share different perspectives on who is responsible, and thus, it often causes a fight between insurance agents with those involved in the accident in the middle of it. An attorney can protect you and your child from that. This is particularly important when your child is on your insurance or isn’t recorded as an approved driver of your car.
Contact Your Insurance Agent
Finally, always contact your insurance agent as soon as possible following your teenager’s car accident. By doing so, you not only show you are not trying to hide the accident or delay reporting it, but you also give your insurance agent critical time they can use to learn more about the accident. While it’s always possible your teen driver’s insurance rates may increase, this may not happen if your agent is convinced the accident was not your son or daughter’s fault.
By having copies of police reports, making medical treatment a priority, and discussing possible accident scenarios with your teen driver beforehand, you and your family may be able to come through the accident with your teen driver’s health and insurance rates still intact.