Social host liability means party not too hearty
It’s holiday party time, and if you are the party host, your responsibility extends beyond figuring out what appetizers to serve with the wine and beer. There is something called “social host liability,” which means at a party where alcohol is served, the hosts are responsible for making sure guests can safely drive home.
There are different legal obligations in each state. In Florida, hosts are generally not responsible for their guests’ behavior. However, if alcoholic beverages are provided to anyone under age 21, and the underage person becomes intoxicated and injures a third party, the host may be partially responsible. He or she can be sued for damages and/or have their driver’s license suspended as penalty. Additionally, if liquor is served to a known alcoholic, and that individual becomes drunk and injures someone, the host may be liable.
Violations of liability laws can bring civil or criminal fines. Plugging liability gaps is something you should address with your insurance agent or company. A standard homeowners policy provides protection for injury or property damage that you or family members cause to others. But the liability limits start at $100,000. Experts recommend at least $300,000 worth of protection, and buying more coverage may make sense. An umbrella policy provides even more protection, including claims against you for liable and slander.
Being a party host is a lot like being a parent. Your influence matters. We have some safe party tips to ensure a fun time is had by all.