Teen Driving Accidents in Fayetteville: Prevention and Legal Action

Car accidents can always have devastating effects but they’re even more shocking when young drivers are involved. Georgia has very specific laws and regulations when it comes to teen driving and safety on the road. These laws are meant to improve teen driving accident prevention.

If you need more clarity, you can always consult a Fayetteville car accident lawyer to discover a bit more about the most important stipulations and the consequences of ignoring them.

Georgia Teen Driving Laws

In Georgia, teen drivers have the largest proportion of being involved in fatal crashes out of all demographics. Of all young drivers fatally injured in a crash, 42 percent didn’t wear a seatbelt and 10 percent were distracted while driving. These are serious issues linked to inexperience or an overly naïve view of safety measures, rules, and their importance.

Several teen driving laws are effective in Fayetteville as well as the rest of Georgia.

Joshua’s Law

Joshua’s Law is particularly important when it comes to teen drivers. According to this regulation, all 16-year-olds applying for a Class D license have to complete an approved driver education course. They also need 40 hours of supervised driving before receiving their license.

In July 2021, Joshua’s Law also extended to 17-year-olds looking to receive their Class D driver’s license.

This law has made the requirements for a license more rigorous than they are in other parts of the US. The goal here is easy to understand – Joshua’s Law aims to give young drivers better training and more experience to reduce the risk of an accident later on.

Additional Teen Driving Restrictions

Georgia also has a couple of restrictions that apply to the owners of a Class D license:

  • They aren’t allowed to drive between midnight and 5 am
  • Only immediate family members can ride in the vehicle operated by a Class D license owner for the first six months after this driving permit is issued
  • In the next six months after issuance, only one passenger under the age of 21 who is not a member of the family can ride in the car
  • After one year of issuance, only three passengers aged under 21 who are not family members can ride in the car

These restrictions are based on the class of license and not the age of the driver. Drivers who are 18 and older (and who have no driving convictions) can apply for a Class C license that will lift the restrictions mentioned above.

teen drivers often cause severe accidents

What Happens after a Teen Driving Accident

In Georgia, you cannot sue a minor for causing property damage or injuries during a car crash. A parent or guardian, however, can be held accountable. That’s why consulting a very experienced Fayetteville car accident lawyer will be essential to address the situation in the best way.

Typically, the parent’s insurance company will be responsible for covering damages. Injured individuals have the right to sue the parents or guardians for damages and medical costs exceeding the insurance coverage.

Parents’ Liability

Ga. Code § 51-2-2 outlines the situations that make a parent liable for a car accident caused by a minor. Vicarious liability holds a parent or a guardian responsible for a minor’s negligence whenever it contributes to a crash. Such negligence can occur in one of the following ways:

  • They gave the minor driver access to a vehicle (either explicitly or implicitly)
  • They had an idea about the inexperience/incompetence of a minor driver
  • Negligence was the cause of the car crash and there’s clear evidence of it

These conditions have to be met each time a victim is suing for damages exceeding the insurance coverage. Depending on the specifics of the situation, negligence could be easy to establish. The right defense strategy will very much depend on selecting the right car accident attorney and countering claims made by the plaintiff.

It’s also important to understand the fact that Georgia is a comparative negligence state. Thus, both a minor vehicle operator and the other driver involved in the crash could be found at fault for the accident. If a victim is found to be more than 49 percent at fault for the situation, they will not be able to sue and collect damages.

Consult a Fayetteville Car Accident Attorney Immediately

If you were involved in a teen driving accident, even if the consequences of the collision are minor, get in touch with a Fayetteville car accident lawyer.

Our experienced team members understand the complexities related to crashes caused by underage drivers. Call us at 770-282-1188 to schedule your consultation.

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