• 4 Frequently Asked Questions about Car Insurance for Teens

Image of two teens driving in a car

If your teen is about to turn 16, they are probably eager to get behind the wheel and start driving. But, as parents ourselves, we know there’s a good chance you’re still trying to wrap your head around the idea. Even so, it is smart to learn all you can about your teen’s unique car insurance requirements.

Morse, of course, is ready to provide you with advice and guidance that will make the process of getting car insurance easier for you and your young driver. While you probably have many questions for us, we’ll start off by answering the four that we most commonly get from parents about car insurance for their teens.

1. When does a teen driver need to get car insurance?

We recommend contacting your local insurance professional as soon as your teen starts taking driver’s ed courses because it won’t be much longer until they get their learner’s permit and are asking you to let them drive your car—with you in it, of course! At Morse, we like to double-check parents’ car insurance policies to see if it’s necessary to make updates to include your child. Even though Massachusetts state law typically doesn’t require you to add your young driver while they have their learner’s permit, you still may want to consider doing so for the extra protection it could provide if your child causes an accident.

Once your teen graduates to a Junior Operator License, they must have an auto insurance policy, whether that means adding them to the family policy or purchasing a separate one. How do you decide what to do? You can call Morse, of course, or you can read on because that happens to be what we discuss in Question No. 2.

2. Should I add my teen driver to my current car insurance policy, or should I purchase a separate policy for them?

Many parents choose to add a teen driver to their existing car insurance policy, even though it often means modifying their coverage and seeing their insurance premium go up. Still, this option may be more cost-effective than securing a separate car insurance policy for your teen, especially while your child is still living at home and using your vehicle.

On the other hand, if your teen is going to have their own car, you may want to explore the option of getting them a separate car insurance policy. This route may be appealing to parents who want to keep their pristine driving record intact and maintain the benefits and cost savings that often come with having a clean driving history. If you keep your auto policies separate and your teen commits a surchargeable offense, such as speeding, your own policy and premium typically won’t be impacted. However, your teen’s policy and premium probably will be. Keep in mind that, due to their age and lack of driving experience, it can be quite expensive to get a separate car insurance policy for your teen.

To figure out the best route for you, your teen, and your wallet, you’ll want to call your dedicated Morse professional who can help you weigh all your options.

3. How much does car insurance for teens cost?

Car insurance for a teen, or any inexperienced driver for that matter, is typically pricier than for the average Joe who’s been driving for a handful of years or more. That’s because, statistically, novice operators are much more likely than experienced drivers to be involved in a motor vehicle accident. However, after your teen has been driving for a few years and reaches the age of 19, their auto policy premium is likely to decrease as long as they haven’t had any infractions. On the other hand, if your young driver has been involved in any accidents, gotten a speeding ticket, or racked up any other traffic violations on their driving record, their car insurance rate is likely to remain at a higher premium until they have a violation-free period of at least six years.

4. How can I save on car insurance for my teen?

Morse, of course, understands your desire to try to save a few bucks on your young driver’s car insurance, but we want to help you do that without sacrificing the quality of your coverage. Two potential discounts that your teen might be eligible for are:

  • Student Away at School Discount. If your teen attends school far from home (meaning more than 100 miles away), doesn’t take a car with them, and only drives your insured car occasionally, such as during school breaks, let your Morse insurance agent know so they can see if you’re eligible to take advantage of this discount. It might even be possible to change your student from a primary driver to an occasional driver, which may also lower your premiums.
  • Good Student Discount. Teens who are full-time high school or college students and who maintain at least a B average or achieve a certain score on standardized tests like the SAT or ACT may qualify for cost savings.

In addition, you might be able to decrease the cost of your car insurance by enrolling your teen in an advanced driver training course that’s been approved by your insurance company. Taking a safe driving course will teach your teen valuable driving skills that go beyond a typical driver’s education class, including how to drive in hazardous conditions, defensive driving, and more. This additional training is a win for everyone because your teen will likely become a more confident and safer driver, and you may get access to a three-year auto policy premium discount.

If you have more car insurance questions, whether they’re related to your teen driver or to your family and vehicles in general, please give us a call at 508-238-0056, contact us online, or visit us in person at one of our four convenient Massachusetts locations. Morse, of course, is here to help you select the right coverage options and get competitive quotes for every car and driver in your household.

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