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Helping your Teen Buy a Safe Car

Teenagers who have just secured their driver’s licenses inevitably want the freedom of their own car. Unfortunately, because of budget concerns, they may be choosing a much older model without some of the safety features of a modern car. Studies have shown older cars purchased by teenagers may have fewer safety standards and may potentially put them at risk in the event of a car accident.

Photo by: Hans Haase

Photo by: Hans Haase

Of course, you want your child to be safe. That’s why you’ll want to follow these tips for ensuring your child gets a safe car:

1) Discuss the budget before you go.

Before your child starts car hunting, sit down and discuss budget expectations. How much is your child planning on spending on the car? Have they considered maintenance and driving costs? Can you contribute towards their vehicle or are they responsible for taking care of it themselves? Go over what a reasonable budget is like and discuss ways your child can plan for the expense of a car.

2) Go with your child to check out car.

If your child will be purchasing a used car, consider going with them or send a friend or family member with them to check out various vehicles. Sometimes, sellers may assume a younger buyer may not know as much about cars and may downplay car dangers.

3) Teach your child how to shop safely.

If your child is buying a used car, explain to them that they can take the car to a mechanic for an inspection to determine its safety. Show your child how they can look up a car’s history through the VIN number to ensure the car hasn’t been in serious accidents. Together, research any car your child is considering buying to make sure it is as safe as possible.

4) Go on a test drive with your child.

Any sellers should allow you to test drive the car. Come along on the drive and listen for any unusual noises from the car. Try the car yourself. Since you have more driving experience, you may be able to detect problems your child may overlook.

5) Protect your child at closing.

If you are buying from a private seller, especially, ensure there is a record of the sale and proof you have paid. Make sure the seller has transferred registration and title to your child to avoid problems later. Get the car insured before your child drives it.

If your child has been hurt in a car accident in Hollywood or your community involving an unsafe car, contact Flaxman Law Group. Your family may have a products liability claim or other claim. We can help you analyze your case and explore the legal options available to you. Our offices in Hollywood, Homestead, and Miami always support those who have been injured through no fault of their own.