Because of inexperience behind the wheel and risk-taking behaviors, teen drivers have higher insurance rates. Teenagers are also the most likely to be involved in accidents, with 16-year-old drivers over 2.5 times more likely to be in a crash than 20- to 24-year-olds. Racking up tickets or accidents can quickly put your teen driver in the position of having to find SR-22 insurance, which will drive up their insurance costs with higher rates as a hard-to-insure driver.
Your teen driver can lower his car insurance rate by:
- Maintaining good grades for a Good Student discount
- Completing a driver’s education course
- Paying a higher deductible
- Driving a sensible vehicle (a sedan vs. a sports car)
Steps you can take to lower your teen driver’s car insurance rate:
- Ask about multiple vehicle auto insurance discounts
- Check into multiple policy insurance discounts if you have the same home and auto carrier
- Ask if you can include your teen driver on your policy as an “occasional” or “pleasure-use only” driver
Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL)
To lower the teen drivers’ death rate, all states have enacted Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) laws that phase in driving privileges upon successful completion of specific Graduated Driver Licensing program requirements. GDL programs allow teen drivers to safely gain driving capability before earning full driving privileges. A complete chart of requirements for all states can be found here.
The Louisiana DMV GDL program is broken down into the following steps:
- Learner’s permit, which allows:
- Supervised driving practice with a licensed adult who is at least 21 years old or a licensed sibling who is at least 18 years old.
- Provisional driver’s license, which allows:
- Unsupervised driving between 5 a.m. and 11 p.m.
- Supervised driving with a licensed adult at any time.
- No more than 1 passenger younger than 21 years old between 6 p.m. and 5 a.m., unless:
- You are accompanied by a licensed adult.
- The passenger is an immediate family member.
- Full, unrestricted driver’s license.
The minimum age requirements of the Louisiana DMV GDL program are as follows:
- Learner’s permit: 15 years old.
- Intermediate driver’s license: 16 years old.
- Full driver’s license: 17 years old.
Alabama Graduated Driver License Law
Stage I – Learner’s Permit
- Must be age 15 or older.
- Must pass a written examination.
- Can only drive when accompanied by a parent, legal guardian or licensed driver who is age 21 or older and occupying the seat beside the driver
Stage II – Restricted License
- Must be age 16 or older.
- Must have permission from parent or legal guardian to receive a Stage II license and drive without permission. (There is a form that must be filled out for this Stage II restricted license)
- A State II (restricted) driver cannot drive during the hours of midnight and 6 a.m. unless accompanied by a parent or legal guardian, accompanied by a licensed driver who is age 21 or older with parent or legal guardian’s consent, going to or from an event sponsored by school or religious organization, going to or from place of employment or driving for the purpose of medical, fire or law-enforcement related emergency.
- Must not have more than one passenger in the vehicle other than parents, legal guardians or family members.
- Must not use any handheld communications devices while driving
Adding a teen driver to your policy
Many insurers require that all licensed drivers in your home carry some form of car insurance.
Do I need to add my teen driver with a learners permit to my policy?
That depends on your state’s insurance requirements, but in most cases, your policy will cover your teen driver until he or she is licensed.
While many states don’t require insurance for a teen driver who has a learners permit, all states, with the exception of New Hampshire, require coverage for licensed drivers.
Do teen drivers have to be insured on all cars under the same roof?
Most every insurer will require that all licensed family members in the same home be included on your policy, whether they drive your cars or not. In states that do require car-driver matching, each driver in your home will be named as the primary driver for one car, so you can identify which car your teen will be the primary driver on.