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Social Host and DUI Liability


Know Your Liability as a Social Host

With the holiday season rounding the corner, there will be an increase of parties, social events, and unfortunately an increase in drunk driving incidents as well. While the driver will be held responsible for driving while impaired, what about the person who supplied them with alcohol? When it comes to holding social events and parties, it’s important to know what kind of responsibility you have for any accidents that may happen.

Can a Host Be Held Responsible for an Incident?

If a social host is found to be liable for an accident caused by an intoxicated driver, it would be known as "third-party liability." Ohio has laws that allow someone injured in an accident caused by an intoxicated driver to sue the establishment where the intoxicated driver obtained his or her alcoholic drinks. However, this law does not apply to hosts of social events.


You cannot be held responsible if a guest at your party injures someone in a collision if the driver was 21 years of age or older. The answer will be different if the driver you served was underage, and the driver injured someone in a car collision.

When Can You Be Held Responsible?

In the event that someone is injured in a collision with a party guest, the injured party may file a claim against the social host because he or she served the minor in question alcohol. In addition to that, the injured party may also sue the underage driver for compensation for his injuries.


A social host liability claim can result in several monetary damages that the social host would be responsible for paying the injured person, including the following:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Property damages
  • Wages lost from recuperating from the accident or permanent disability
  • Medical expenses

Contact a Columbus Criminal Defense Attorney

If you or a loved one has been charged with serving alcohol to a minor, it's imperative to talk to a Columbus criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. You shouldn't have to face the charges alone because doing so could result in penalties that you shouldn't have to pay. Call on the team of experienced attorneys at The Meranda Law Firm in Columbus for comprehensive representation.

call us today at (614) 707-4239 to discuss your situation and begin building your defense.