Social Host Liability Law and Legal Definition

The term "social host" means anyone who hosts a social gathering, including private individuals, employers, and organizations. Such hosts amy be liable for injurues suffered by their guests and third parties who are harmed by serving alcohol to a guest to whom alcohol is served as an act of hospitality or social courtesy, with no motive for pecuniary gain. Laws governing socialhost liability vary by state, so local laws should be consulted for specific requirements in your area. Typically, liability will be found is the social host served alcohol to a person when he knew or should have known the person was intoxicated, and when he knew the person would be driving afterwards.

Social host liability in some states is limited to injuries suffered by third parties. In other states, a social host is also liable for injuries sustained by the drunken guest. Potential social hosts should check to see if their homeowner's or business insurance covers this type of liability. If not, it may be possible to purchase insurance coverage for special events, such as a wedding reception.