Social Host Liability

Social Host Liability

In some states (including Connecticut), a party’s host can be held liable under a general social host liability law for serving alcohol to minors (or anyone else who’s of legal age to drink) in excess. For example, if you’re hosting a holiday party and you serve alcohol in excess to someone (whether they’re under or over 21 years old) if they were to get in a car accident that resulted in the death or injury of another person, you could be held liable for serving them excessive amounts of alcohol.

What You Can Do to Limit Your Risk?

Begin by always establishing firm ground rules with your guests and underage members of your family.

Legal-Age Party Guests:

  • Check with each guest who their designated driver is when they arrive at the party.
  • Don’t encourage drinking games or challenges.
  • Keep alcohol away from minors.
  • Stop serving drinks an hour before the party ends.
  • Allow guests to stay the night if they can’t drive themselves home and don’t have a ride.


Under-Age Party Guests:

  • Educate your children not only about the dangers of underage drinking but also how it could affect the entire family.
  • Set clear ground rules for when your children have friends over, especially if you’re going to allow friends to come over when you aren’t around.
  • Set a good example for your children. Never drink and drive and always drink responsibly, especially around your children.
  • Don’t tolerate any use of alcohol when your children have friends over.
  • If you find an underage guest is drinking in your home, you need to respond promptly and demand that they stop. If the minor appears intoxicated, don’t let them drive. Either drive them home yourself or have a parent or guardian pick them up.

You can do your best to set an example, set clear expectations, and enforce your rules, but unfortunately, your guests may choose to make decisions that let things get out of hand quickly.

Protect Yourself & Your Family:

A personal umbrella insurance policy is the best way to protect you and your family from unexpected legal issues. If your homeowners’ insurance policy is like a jacket that keeps you dry during a light drizzle, an umbrella insurance policy is like the umbrella you would need if the drizzle turned into a heavy downpour.

For more information on your family’s specific risks and for a free, no-obligation umbrella insurance quote, give our office a call, today!


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