Everyone knows that teenagers can be careless drivers. However, to assume that every accident can be blamed on a teenager is unfair. Many teenagers are better drivers than any adult, and sometimes they are involved in accidents that were not their fault. To help you better cope with what happens next after an accident involving your teenager, read on.
Who Was at Fault?
Try to take the age of the driver out of the equation for a moment and find out what happened. Your teenager should have been provided with an accident report. If not, obtain one from the law enforcement agency that handled the accident. This report is very important, and the officer's opinion about the cause of the accident is held in high regard. Read over the report and learn who caused the accident. Be sure you also check the report for errors and conflicting information. It's easy for law enforcement officers to be distracted or confused about who was driving what vehicle and what happened while at a chaotic scene.
Speak to a Personal Injury Lawyer
Regardless of who the accident report claimed to be at fault, speak to a lawyer before you do anything else. The lawyer will undoubtedly inform you that minor-aged people cannot be held responsible for a car accident (unless it's a criminal matter), but the parents of the teenager can. That means it's your responsibility to clear up any issues or you will be paying the other driver's damages.
The lawyer can help you by investigating the accident to determine which driver was at fault. If your teenager was obviously at fault, your lawyer will negotiate with the other driver's insurer to keep the costs down as much as possible.
Not at Fault
If your teenager was innocent of causing the wreck but is being accused of it, you may still face issues with a contentious fault situation. Your lawyer will gather evidence to show how the accident occurred using eyewitnesses, photographs, reconstruction experts, video footage, and more. Moreover, your lawyer will also mitigate the damages by questioning the other driver's medical treatment costs and other forms of damage.
What to Do
Making the right moves during a stressful situation is important, so remember to:
- Ensure your teenager gets medical treatment care no matter what.
- Never speak to the other driver, their insurer, or anyone else but your own lawyer about the accident.
Contact a car accident attorney for more information.