A social host is anyone who provides a guest alcohol without receiving money. This contrasts with Dram Shops and Liquor Liability laws which apply to businesses serving customers or patrons alcohol as a part of their business.
Social host liability laws deal with individual property owners or persons in control of property like home, boat, or hotel room who serves alcohol or allows the consumption of alcohol to occur on their property. Social host liability laws serve to extend liability to any property owner who provides or allows a visibility intoxicated guest or minor to consume alcohol on their property. In these situations the social host can be held liable for any injuries caused by or sustained to the intoxicated guest or minor.
Social Host Liability and Underage Drinking
A December 2010 newspaper article in the Patriot Ledger titled “Hingham school survey shows increase in parent-sanctioned teen drinking parties” revealed that more that twenty-five percent of 9th and 11th graders at Hingham High School admitted to going to parties where parents were home and knew alcohol was beings consumed by minors.
Every spring brings the graduation of another high school class and the prom season that provides graduating students the last big party or gathering with friends before going off to college and their separate ways. Most high school seniors want graduation and prom parties to be special and frequently attempt to include alcohol in the mix. Social host liability laws come into effect when an adult allows a person under 21 to consume alcohol on their property. A homeowner parent doesn’t need to hand the minor alcohol in order to be liable. A homeowner can be liable if they knew minors were consuming alcohol on their property or if a minor takes alcohol from the parent’s liquor cabinet without the parent’s knowledge or consent. In these situations the parent property owner may be liable for injuries to third parties if minor that consumed the alcohol on their property gets into a drunk driving accident or commits and assault and battery or even a Rape. The social host can also be held responsible to any injuries sustained to the minor that consumed alcohol.
Massachusetts Social Host Liability Lawyers For Plaintiffs
If you or a loved one has been the victim of a drunk driving accident or an assault and battery caused by a someone that was over-served alcohol at someone’s home or private party then call our Massachusetts Social Host Liability Lawyers today. With offices conveniently located in Quincy, Brockton and Taunton we represent clients throughout all of Southeastern Massachusetts. Call our personal injury lawyers today and schedule a free no-obligation consultation.