UPDATED: Nov 5, 2019
It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right coverage choices.
Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident insurance decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. We partner with top insurance providers. This doesn't influence our content. Our opinions are our own.
Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about car insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything car insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by car insurance experts.
There are many driving habits that can be detrimental to your child’s safety. Student drivers are especially susceptible to distractions and poor choices on the road. Factors that don’t typically affect adult drivers, like night driving and passengers, frequently contribute to teen auto accidents. And bad driving habits can lead to far more than minor accidents. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, teen drivers, which include drivers between 16 and 19, are three times more likely to be in a fatal crash than adult drivers aged 20 or older. In 2010, almost 3,000 teens died in motor vehicle accidents.
Why Teens are at Risk
In an age where technology gives students access to social media and constant communication with friends, it’s no wonder that students are so easily lured into the temptation of texting while driving. And that isn’t the only risk — students who drive with passengers can easily be distracted from paying attention to the road. Those who don’t wear seatbelts or perform routine maintenance on their vehicles are also at risk. With this in mind, it’s important for parents to set forth some driving guidelines for their students. Teenage driving contracts, which are written agreements between a parent and a student driver, can help parents set those rules on paper. Enter your zip code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates. Secured with SHA-256 Encryption
Enter your zip code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates.
Secured with SHA-256 Encryption
Protecting Your Teen from an Accident
You may think your student driver knows what you expect them to do when behind the wheel, but unless you make your rules clear, it may be difficult for teens to keep them in the forefront of their minds. Driving contracts give students clear guidelines for expected driving conduct, and they also clarify the consequences for failing to follow the rules.
Driving contracts between parents and teens can cover a variety of topics, from distracted driving to drowsy driving. Parents are encouraged to consider some of the high risk factors of collisions and incorporate those into a contract. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Do I want my teen to talk on the phone or texting while driving?
- How do I want my teen to behave when he or she has a passenger?
- What precautions should my teen take while driving at night?
- Do I want my teen to wear a seatbelt while driving?
- What types of routine maintenance should my teen perform?
- What action should my teen take if he or she is under the influence?
For more inspiration about the different points your contract can cover, you can use example contracts. Many state websites, including Maine, North Carolina, and California, provide contract templates for parents who want to ensure that their teens are safe drivers.
Keep in mind that states have laws that can help you determine the limits on your student driver’s driving activities. For instance, all states consider driving under the influence to be illegal and many also have curfews in place for drivers under the age of 18. However, the exact stipulations may vary.
Once you have your contract written, sit down with your teenager and discuss each point. Make sure your teenager understands what he or she is signing and why. Teenagers who understand the contract and the consequences that result from violating the contract will be more likely to drive safely, which will decrease the probability of an accident and, in turn, keep your insurance rates low.