If a teenager engages in behavior that causes property damage to someone else’s home or car, it’s likely that your teenager will have law enforcement and the judicial system exacting some serious consequences. In an egging incident, your teen will also need parental discipline. As a parent, you will need to support all applicable legal consequences to help teach your child that his behavior is unacceptable.
Explain the harm to your child if he doesn’t understand the damage. Throwing eggs at a car or home can damage the paint and necessitate a new paint job. A thrown egg could also break a window. Ensure that your teenager understands that egging property is vandalism, which is against the law.
Lead your teenager to contact the owner of the egged property to apologize for the egging and to offer to clean up the eggs, if applicable (some egg damage may not be possible to clean off and will require repainting). Supervise your teenager while he contacts the property owner by telephone to apologize for the crime and to offer his cleaning services. Follow through to ensure that your teenager cleans off the eggs from the property. Check with the property owner after the teenager completes the work to ensure that the teen did a satisfactory job.
Support whatever legal ramifications come of your teenager’s egging escapade. Your teenager will likely need to pay a fine and damages. He may also need to perform community service to atone for the egging crime.
Ensure that your teenager pays all monies due for the incident and carries out all community service without assistance. Paying a fine or the damages for your teen will not teach him personal responsibility and accountability.
- Although it can feel tempting to simply ground your teenager for egging a house or a car, specific consequences that tie into the infraction can be much more effective at teaching lessons and discouraging repeat behavior, asserts the King County Step-Up Program, which relies on a model of accountability, competency development and family safety in dealing with troubled teenagers. By making your teenager take responsibility for his actions to make it right with the property owner, you exact specific consequences that fit the crime perfectly. Contacting the property owner can be humbling for your teenager and can show him precisely what harm he created with his misbehavior.
- As parents responsible for a minor teenager, you may be held liable for the damage if your teenager does not pay fines and damages or complete community service, according to the Rotolo Law Firm.
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