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Blogs from July, 2021

holding beers

The summertime means more parties, backyard barbecues, and outdoor gatherings at private residences. While planning these events, the last thing you would probably think to worry about is insurance or liability. But if you plan on serving alcohol at a gathering taking place at your home, you should be aware of California’s social host liability laws.

What Does the California Law Say?

Several states have social host liability laws that essentially hold a social host civilly and/or criminally liable in certain instances if a guest who leaves their home ends up injuring themselves or another person due to alcohol consumption. In other states, social host liability is oftentimes referred to if a guest who leaves a gathering after being over-served alcohol injures another person in a drunk driving accident.

California, however, is not one of the states that holds social hosts liable for what their guests do after consuming alcohol at the social host’s home. Specifically, California Civil Code Section 1714 essentially says that:

  • Providing alcohol to a person is not the direct cause of alcohol-related injuries or damages. The act of consuming alcohol is the main cause.
  • Therefore, in most situations, it is the person who consumed the alcohol who is responsible for the outcome. The social host would generally not be liable.

The one major exception to California’s social host liability laws has to do with alcohol that is provided by adults to minors. In order to successfully file a social host liability claim in California after a drunk driving accident involving a minor, it must be shown that:

  1. The social host was an adult;
  2. The social host knew that the individual who caused the accident was underage;
  3. The social host furnished alcohol anyway; and
  4. The consumption of alcohol was the main cause of the car crash.

Injured in a Drunk Driving Accident?

If you have been injured due to a drunk driver, our team is standing by ready to review your case for free and determine what legal options you have pursuing compensation, be it through filing a claim against the drunk driver or against a social host if the drunk driver was underage.

At Effres & Effres, our dedicated Los Angeles attorneys are committed to protecting the rights of those injured across Southern California. We have recovered over $300 million on behalf of our clients, and you have our word that we will fight hard for maximum compensation on your behalf, too.

Get quality legal representation today by calling (818) 222-9720 at your earliest convenience! We offer free case reviews, and clients pay no upfront fees to retain our services.

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