If they haven’t learned by now that there are definite consequences to their actions, then what better time than when other peoples lives are in their hands? Teens should pay for their own car insurance if for no other reason than instilling a sense of accountability in them. They should definitely see their premiums go up for every speeding ticket they get and every little fender bender that may happen. Why should the parents cover such costs? What does that teach the teen?
They need to learn responsibility. Vehicle maintenance costs will help them learn that. They’ll soon understand that if you drive your car hard, you can expect to need more repairs. And fuel costs can help them understand the importance of budgeting. What better time to learn than when the parents are still right there to advise them and help out if needed? These are much harder lessons to learn later in life, with nothing to fall back on.
And we’ve all seen another driver on the road do something that’s dangerous or reckless or just plain stupid. Whether it’s drastic speeding, missing a sign, running a red, or some other illegal action that can cause an accident, how many times have you looked over and seen a teenager behind the wheel? Teens are amongst the most likely group to be caught stunting in their cars, too. Why should anyone but them pay for their insurance?
Their rates are higher than most because of these typical behaviors they often display. Not all of course, and not always but enough to be classified as a higher risk category. And the fault for this lies nowhere but with the teens and their attitudes of invincibility. I used to feel that way, too. And I learned that reality is contrary to such feelings. I learned to take it easy. And then my premiums dropped, as will theirs.
If it’s their car, make it their responsibility. Otherwise, they learn nothing but the fact that ‘mom and dad’ will bail them out whenever they get themselves into trouble. Unless you (as a parent) are willing to forever be there and always bail them out with no real consiquences, let them learn these lessons. With the great freedom of a car, comes great responsibility. Responsibility of maintenance and its costs, as well as responsibility to society to be a carefull and courteous driver and citizen.