June 26, 2017
Who doesn’t love a party with friends and family? If you are the host of a party, you may see some of your guests get carried away after a few drinks. Did you know that you could be liable if an intoxicated guest causes an injury to another? Many states follow “social host liability” laws. Social host liability laws state that a host of a party who provides alcoholic beverages to guests or visitors can be held liable if a guest becomes intoxicated and causes an injury to another.
Not all states have social host liability laws and some only impose responsibility on a host who provides alcohol to someone under the legal drinking age. However, if you see an intoxicated guest at a party or your party, alert the host immediately. If you are the host of a party, take the guest’s keys away.
Social host liability can be based on negligence, recklessness or intentional conduct depending on the state. Recklessness is classified as being aware of and disregarding a substantial risk that something unsafe could happen. Intentional conduct is determined as having knowledge of a particular situation. For example, the host would have knowledge that a particular guest was intoxicated, but allowed him or her to drive home.
You should have fun and enjoy the parties, friends, family, laughter and stories, but always be aware and make the security and safety of your guests a priority.