It seems like a “right of passage” from childhood into becoming an adult. Your little boy or girl turns 16 and MUST have a car because everyone in school has one. Teens crave the freedom away from Mom and Dad, acceptance by their peers and the ability to show off (with the right vehicle of course!).
Teen Driving Statistics
Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of teen death in the United States. An average of 6,000 teens die and another 300,000 are injured annually across the nation. Teens crash for many reasons, but the most common are overconfidence, speeding, impaired driving, distraction and inexperience. In addition, seat belt use among teens is the lowest of any age group on the road.
In the United States, teens (17 to 20 years of age) are involved in 15% of crashes. Recent statistics from the Iowa Dept of Transportation show that motor vehicle crashes are now the #1 killer of teens in America. In Iowa, teens and young adults (ages 14-24) represent 17 percent of licensed drivers, but suffer 40 percent of all fatal and serious traffic injuries. Speed, distraction, fatigue and inexperience, coupled with a lack of seat belt use, are all prevalent factors in these fatal crashes.
Iowa is one of many states that have enacted Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) laws.
Graduated driver licensing is designed to introduce teenage drivers to driving in stages, over an extended period of time, in an environment that minimizes risk. A teen typically progresses through a permit phase, where he or she practices with supervision, to a provisional or probationary phase, which allows for independent driving with restrictions. Following successful completion of this phase, a teen is granted full driving privileges. The key here to educating the young driver is practice. As parents or guardians of the new teen driver, we should spend as much time as possible helping the newly licensed driver to practice their new skills behind the wheel.
Drivers holding a GDL license have the following restrictions placed upon them. For current information we recommend visiting the IowaDOT.
Once the new driver has completed at least 6 months of driving, and is at least 16 years old, they can apply and receive a standard Iowa driver’s license with no restrictions.
Iowa Fraud Laws and Auto Insurance
Insurance statistics show that since the youthful driver is significantly more likely to have an accident than a typical adult driver, so there will be a higher premium charged when the youthful driver is added to the parents policy.
There is a temptation then to “forget” to add the new driver to the auto policy or not list the new driver on your renewal questionnaire in order to save money even though the child is driving Mom or Dad’s car. We caution you against this practice. The State of Iowa has certain fraud laws in this area that will allow an insurance company to deny a claim in the event the driver is an undisclosed household operator. In addition, the Attorney General has the ability to fine the policy holder in the range of thousands of dollars.
Insurance-Friendly Cars For Teens
The decision is made. You want to buy your son or daughter their first car. It will be in your name and properly added to your policy. But what to buy? You know it’s not only the car model you have to consider. You also have to think about the impact the car will have on your auto insurance.
Insurance companies surcharge youthful operators in three areas:
- Comprehensive (theft)
- Collision (damage caused to the vehicle in an accident
If you choose a vehicle that may be older, and does not require comprehensive or collision (a lower value vehicle) the premium will be considerably less than a newer one which will require full coverage.
Because we represent many different companies, your friendly agent at Thams Agency can help you make the right insurance decision when buying that first car for your teenager.
Thams Agency is a full service Independent Insurance Agent We have been providing insurance products since 1934. We offer a full array of Personal Insurance, Commercial Insurance and Life Insurance & Health Insurance products. Call us at 712-263-3193 or contact us.
Our clients say it best….
The agents at Thams make you feel like you are part of a family. They are extremely personable and the level of communication exceeds any company I have had experience with.
Client since 2004
We feel that we have professionals serving our every need at the Thams Agency whether it be house, auto, or health. One stop takes care of all of our insurance needs, and we know it’s done right. P.S. Your offices are lovely. Good move on your part to remodel and maintain the historical attributes of the building while still making it modern.
Thams Agency has an honest, and straight forward approach to dealing with customers. They work hard to find the best insurance coverages and prices for the customer, while giving guidance and reasoning for customers to make the most informed decision possible.
You served my folks well and I have found no reason to switch elsewhere. Your company seems rooted in Denison and an asset to the community, which is always an important part of being in business in any community.
Virginia Dobler McCurdyCustomer since 2011
After switching to Thams, I feel like I am getting as good, maybe even slightly better property insurance coverage for a whole lot less money. As long as the premium does not take any significant jumps in the next few years then I believe this was a great switch to Thams. Very friendly staff. I feel like I should have gone to see them many years ago.
Brian E.Customer since 2014
They have helped reduce my payments with discounts like homeowner, safe driving, multi car, etc. Their rates are better then the old insurance company I had, they just kept raising rates although I had never had an accident (and they didn’t have discounts either). When I first came in to to talk to Todd and ask about their rates, they were 50 % lower then what I was paying. Now they are even lower due to discounts.