Social Host Liability

Hosting a party for friends and family can be a great way to create a pleasant evening in which people are able to enjoy themselves and interact in the comfort of one’s home. While playing host involves certain obvious responsibilities, such as making sure the dining room is clean and taking the guests’ coats, there is one very serious legal obligation that many hosts and hostesses are unaware of: the duty of responsibly distributing alcohol. Unfortunately, too many hosts fail to respect the legal drinking age when hosting gatherings in their homes, and this can have terrible consequences.

Massachusetts law states that a social host can be held partially liable for damages caused in an incident related to alcohol consumption. The attorneys at Crowe & Mulvey, LLP, know how devastating accidents involving alcohol can be. If a drunk driver caused a wreck, or an intoxicated individual attacked someone, or any other incident led to damages of an innocent individual, the victim should not have to shoulder the burden of the resulting costs alone.

What is a Social Host?

Social host laws cover more incidents that you would expect. According to Massachusetts rulings, a social host is:

  • Anyone who provides free alcohol to their guests, and does not have an employee/employer relationship with said guests, or
  • A parent or adult who provides alcohol to minors.

When individuals invite people into their homes, those hosts should assume responsibility for the safety and well-being of their guests. This includes monitoring the level of alcohol intake and preventing inebriated guests from potentially damaging behavior.

Contact a Massachusetts Alcohol Liability Attorney

If you or someone you know has been the victim of an incident involving irresponsibly distributed alcohol, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact the Massachusetts offices of Crowe & Mulvey, LLP, by calling (617) 426-4488 today to discuss your case with a qualified attorney.