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Main Forums => Second Families => Topic started by: forthekids24 on Dec 12, 2007, 05:42:17 PM

Title: OSD is getting ready to drive
Post by: forthekids24 on Dec 12, 2007, 05:42:17 PM
I need suggestions.  
OSD is almost 16, DH is CP; BM has EOW and lives about 50 miles away.

DH and BM have one other daughter (13) together.

Currently BM sends her oldest (not DH’s) daughter who is 17 to pick up SD’s to transport for EOW visitation (to and from school Friday PM to Monday AM).

OSD will be getting her drivers license in the next 5 months, and DH and I will be buying her a car.  BM is refusing to contribute to the cost of the car.

BM doesn’t work, lives off of the guy of the week and is always looking to get rich quick.  BM also has a younger child 1 year old.

DH and I are concerned about letting OSD take her car to BM’s house for the weekends, not only because it is 50 miles away, but we are worried that if something (God forbid) happens when she has her siblings in the car with her that BM will sue us.

Have any of you had similar issues or concerns, what did you do?

Title: RE: OSD is getting ready to drive
Post by: ocean on Dec 12, 2007, 05:53:22 PM
She will just be getting a permit right? Find out exactly what the laws are in your area. Here they can not drive alone until 17 with drivers education so that would buy you another year.....Until she has her full license without restrictions, I would not let her drive that far.
Title: RE: OSD is getting ready to drive
Post by: forthekids24 on Dec 12, 2007, 09:41:18 PM
Here they can drive with siblings in the car before their 17th birthday if they have their parents permission AND if it is a necessity.  Helping the family... to and from school, to dr appointments etc.  

BM isn't one to follow the laws so we suspect she will want OSD to start doing the visitation transportation in addition to caring for her 1 year old sibling.

I am just really worried that BM or the older sister will try to drive the car, or something will happen and they will try to sue DH and I.

I agree, 50 miles is a long way to drive just after you get your lic.

Thanks for your feedback!
Title: RE: OSD is getting ready to drive
Post by: MixedBag on Dec 13, 2007, 06:32:52 AM
If dad supplies the car, dad's rules.

I'd be hesitant to let her drive 50 miles one way in the beginning too.

My rule of thumb for my girls was to "stay in town" which gave them plenty of driving area since we lived in a medium sized town.  And I gave them geographical boundaries (like don't go south over the river, don't go east past the interstate, etc).

Now -- mine too said "Hey, now I can drive myself to Atlanta when I have to go get on a plane and go see dad!"  I let them talk until it came time to really go and then they didn't even remember saying that.

I also have to drive on road trips for my business a lot, so I let each of them sit behind the wheel on a trip like that and drive a 100-mile long leg.  They got the idea quickly, that long distance driving is NOT all fun.

My girls all had plenty of accidents, geez, did we go through cars when they were teens (4 girls -- two steps, two  mine).  

I think you gotta give it some time -- and let BM keep doing what she's doing by letting BM send her oldest.  

As for suing?  Trying to remember what state or what case it was that got posted her or made the news, but a NCP was suing on behalf of their child and got told they can't because they weren't the primary residential parent......maybe some of the old timers can help me there.  But I remember thinking that I can't "help" our son because I'm not primary residential.
Title: What I would do in this situation....m
Post by: Giggles on Dec 13, 2007, 07:35:34 AM
First of all...BM is within her right to refuse to contribute to the cost of the car.  So on that note, you are within your right to refuse to let OSD take the car to BM's.

If it were me, I wouldn't let OSD take the car to BM's especially since she will be a "rookie" driver.  I also won't be buying my children cars either but that's me.  It's been my experience that when things like that are just given they are not taken care of.  I had to buy my own first car and I was so proud of myself for doing so...I also babied that car...anyway...

I would certainly lay out some very specific rules where the car is concerned and until she is 18 those rules apply!
Title: I think you made an important point...
Post by: MixedBag on Dec 13, 2007, 10:28:16 AM
BM is within her rights to refuse to contribute to the cost of the car.

EX#1 contributed as much as I contributed.  But the girls knew how much he contributed to his step-son, so his decision didn't set too well.

EX#2 and I have not discussed the subject since our son isn't quite there yet, but I won't ask him to contribute since we live so far apart (12 hours), I just can't see our son having one car for both places.  I won't let him drive 12 hours to dad's......

EX#3 and his EX....she didn't contribute to anything for the girls.  And while she didn't have to, she went overboard in that respect and she's paying for it now in other ways.
Title: RE: OSD is getting ready to drive
Post by: lucky on Dec 13, 2007, 01:03:48 PM
We're very close to BM (only ~1 mile) to the point that YSD rides her bike back and forth weather permitting instead of dh or bm driving her.  YSD is also 16 yo and has her permit.  
Once YSD gets her license, we have a car for her to drive with the conditions that she pays the insurance and gas and maintenance, etc.  Both dh and I have other vehicles that we drive exclusively.  She knows that she doesn't just get a set of keys, she has to ask us for them and we will decide if she gets to drive there or not.

In addition, YSD has already been told that she CANNOT take our car over to BM's because it's our car, our rules and our butts should anything bad happen.  And our kids have all already proven over and over that "when at NCP's, CP's rules don't count".  Which in most cases IS true, but not regarding the car.

She's not happy and neither is BM as BM thought she'd get out of driving.  YSD thought that she'd get to go out (as she currently does) but she'd be driving because BM said she'd let her (BM thought the Buick was going to belong to YSD - wrong answer).  You should have heard BM whenl BM found out that YSD would have to drive BM's car in that case.  Oh man was THAT a big bang!

I don't care.  She's going to be a new, inexperienced driver and until she is of age it's my and dh's responsibility to make sure she and passengers/other drivers are as safe as we can make them.

Once YSD graduates and stuff, I'll give her the car.  We did that with two of the older three as a graduation gift (they're "beaters" but they run well, just don't look so good).  The third of the older three quit school so HE doesn't get a car.  Once that time comes, it's her own problem - on the other hand, she's never going to get her license 'cause she won't wear her glasses or contacts and I won't let her get a license till she does. :)


Lead your life so you wouldn't be ashamed to sell the family parrot to the town gossip.
- Will Rogers[em]
Title: Thank you everyone!!
Post by: forthekids24 on Dec 14, 2007, 03:19:55 PM
Wow!  Great feedback.

Lots of things to think about, and discuss with DH.

I want to protect OSD and make sure she isn't put in a situation where BM is trying to take advantage of her.

Definately will be our car that she gets to use, now just to discuss with DH and make sure we are on the same page that the car will not go to BM's house.

Thanks again!
Title: RE: OSD is getting ready to drive
Post by: mistoffolees on Dec 14, 2007, 05:58:32 PM
I agree with the people who say I wouldn't allow it.

However, I think you're sending the wrong message when you point out that BM didn't contribute to the cost of the car and talking about the financial issues. None of that is of any meaning to the kid, nor should it be.

If you're providing a car for the child, how you pay for it shouldn't be the child's concern. Similarly, what you allow the child to do with it should have nothing to do with who pays for it.

IMHO, as the CP, you have an obligation to parent the child to the best of your ability when the child is with you. Driving a car is a huge obligation and creates massive liability and risk. Therefore, it is perfectly reasonable for you to control that risk. IMHO, stating that the child can only drive within 10 miles of home town unless there's an adult in the car is not unreasonable for a new driver.

However, the child should be able to earn your respect and trust at some point, so you should have some understanding of what is required before the child IS allowed to drive out of town. Once she has reached that level of trust, it should not matter where she is driving to - visit friends or visit BM.

You could tell her that you do not want her driving anyone in the car without your express permission, but that's going to be hard to enforce.

I wouldn't worry too much about BM suing - that's what you have insurance for. Just make sure you pay your premiums on time and make sure that you have adequate liability coverage (in general, it should be equal to or greater than your net worth, but ask your agent for guidance).
Title: RE: OSD is getting ready to drive
Post by: Ref on Dec 19, 2007, 02:20:38 PM
My husband just got told by his ex that he was a sh&t for not contributing to SD's car. She is 16 and just got a license. She told him he had plenty of $ to afford it and he should be ashaimed.

I couldn't believe that just because she has her license that BM thinks she should get a car. I was 20 before I got my car. Most people were 18 before they got theirs. I really thought BM was being a pain in the a$$ asking (demanding) that he contribute.

DH thinks because Sd's grades are bad and she is missing a lot of school that she shouldn't have a car. SD has bairly spoken to him since April. Why would he buy her a car. He said if things change, he would consider it.

I am amazed that it seems like a common opinion that both parents should contribute to a car for a child when they get their license. Am I wrong, or is a car something to earn? Are kids entitled to a car when they get their license? Is DH a jerk for thinking SD has not been responsible enough?

Title: RE: OSD is getting ready to drive
Post by: mistoffolees on Dec 19, 2007, 10:16:45 PM
I think it depends on the situation.

I agree that a kid should earn the RIGHT to use a car. I don't think that necessarily means that they have to pay for the car. For example, let's say my daughter turns 16 and has $1,000 saved up and wants to buy a car. All she can afford is going to be a clunker and I would not be comfortable with her driving that type of car.

My response would be that I would buy the car for her, but she has to earn the right to drive it - by paying for gas and insurance and taking care of it. That way, I can be sure she has a safe car to drive that is less likely to break down on her.

I think that either your method or mine can work - the critical issue is whether the kid sees it as a gift (or, even worse, an entitlement) or whether they understand that they have to earn it.

But, in either case, I don't think any parent has the right to expect the other parent to do something that's not spelled out in the divorce decree. My ex is constantly expecting me to buy things and it's unfair and annoying. If a parent wants to buy a car for the kid, they can ASK the other parent if they'd like to contribute, but shouldn't expect or demand it.
Title: RE: OSD is getting ready to drive
Post by: Ref on Dec 20, 2007, 06:50:48 AM
My SD doesn't not appreciate any of what DH has done for her financially. She even went so far as to write him a letter stating that he owed her clothes because her mom always bought her clothes in the past and she sent along a catalog with items she wants circled. BTW BM was on welfare and out of work for 10 years while she decided to go to college part-time. SD just doesn't get that DH provided for her 100% financially for most of her life.

BM did ask, but when he said that he needed to know that she is getting better grades (B average), going to school over 85% of the time (she was truant last year because BM allowed it. BM got in trouble), and that SD needed to speak with him more often (Once a month is more than now). BM thought he was asking WAY too much and accused him of cheaping out. She obviously thought SD was entitled.

Sorry a little of a personal vent...
Title: RE: OSD is getting ready to drive
Post by: mistoffolees on Dec 20, 2007, 09:44:20 AM
I agree completely- I don't give in to demands. In fact, there have been times when I would have done something if asked nicely, but refused to do it after ex demanded it and said she was entitled.

I'm not suggesting that you should change your approach. I'm simply saying that some situations might be appropriate for a parent to buy a car for a kid - as long as the kid does something to earn the privilege (whether that's paying for gas and insurance or maintaining good grades doesn't matter much to me). But as soon as my daughter starts saying that she's entitled to a car, she's going to find out how much she likes walking.