Can a teenager legally drive their parents' car?

In most states, teenagers can legally drive their parents' car once they obtain a valid driver's license, regardless of whether they are listed on the parents' insurance policy.

However, many insurance companies require all licensed drivers in a household to be listed on the policy, even if they are just occasional drivers.

Failing to do so can lead to claim denials in the event of an accident.

Teens who are not listed on their parents' insurance policy may face higher car insurance rates once they get their own policy, due to the lack of driving history.

Some states have graduated driver's license laws that place restrictions on teenage drivers, such as limits on nighttime driving or the number of non-family passengers allowed.

Parents can be held liable for any accidents or damages caused by their teenage children while driving the family car, even if the teen is not listed on the insurance.

Many insurers offer "named driver exclusion" policies that allow parents to exclude their teenage children from coverage, but this also means the insurer won't pay out in the event of an accident involving the teen.

Teens who drive without a license or permit can face fines, license suspension, and even criminal charges, regardless of whose car they are operating.

In some states, parents can be fined or charged with a misdemeanor if they knowingly allow an unlicensed teen to drive their vehicle.

Teenage drivers are statistically more likely to be involved in accidents, especially during the first year after obtaining their license.

Parents who add their teenage children to their insurance policy can often qualify for discounts, such as good student or driver's education discounts.

Many automakers now offer features like speed limiters and location tracking to help parents monitor their teen's driving habits.

Regularly discussing safe driving practices and setting clear expectations can help parents mitigate the risks of their teenagers driving the family car.