In Florida, young drivers are given an opportunity to learn how to drive with a learner’s permit from the age of 15 to 17, before they graduate to a full driver’s license. The learner’s permit is designed as a restricted license, to allow the teen the chance to drive on the roads while still supervised by a licensed driver in terms of when they are driving and how many passengers they are carrying. Although there is no better way to learn than through practice, sometimes a young and inexperienced driver can cause a car accident while learning to drive, auto accident attorneys in Florida say.
If you have been in an accident involving a permit driver, contact an attorney from David I. Fuchs, Injury & Accident Lawyer, P.A. to schedule a free initial consultation.
The state laws allow teenagers to apply for a learner’s permit when they turn 15. With the permit, a young driver must be accompanied by a licensed driver aged 21 or older, who must be riding in the front passenger seat. For the first three months, the learning driver can only operate a vehicle between the hours of 6 a.m. and 7 p.m., and after three months, this curfew is extended until 10 p.m. A driver with a learner’s permit must keep his record clean, with no points or convictions, for twelve months, before applying for a full license. These restrictions are intended to keep the permitted driver and his teacher, as well as other drivers out on the road, safe from accidents, hazardous situations, and other dangers.
If you have been involved in a car accident caused by a driver with a learner’s permit, the responsibility for the driver’s actions may be split between both the teenager driver and the parents responsible for teaching him or her to drive safely. If the driver was alone in the car, and the parents allowed him or her to operate the vehicle while they were not present, they have broken the state’s laws regarding supervision of a teen learning to drive and allowed an inexperienced driver out on the roads. In this case, the parent is partially, if not completely, responsible for making sure that the teen acts within the rules that govern the permit.
If the inexperienced driver was operating the vehicle without the knowledge or permission of his or her parents, their liability may be lessened, because they did not help the teen break the law. If this is the case, the young driver may bear the full brunt of the responsibility, including any and all medical, insurance, and car repair bills that resulted from the accident. If the driver is in the car with a licensed driver as the passenger, the driver will then be treated as if he were a fully licensed driver—the permit does not remove responsibility or excuse negligence. While the young driver may have caused the accident based on inexperience rather than negligence, that does not mean that he cannot be held accountable for the accident.
At David I. Fuchs, Injury & Accident Lawyer, P.A., a personal injury lawyer in Florida, we represent clients who have been involved in an auto accident caused by another driver with a license or a permit. Contact David Fuchs today for a free, no-strings consultation about your case.