Social Host Liability in Austin, Texas
Many states have adopted social host liability laws that hold individuals responsible for injuries caused by people who they have allowed to drink in their homes or at other private gatherings before getting behind the wheel. In Texas, the state’s social host law applies to those who serve alcohol to children younger than 18 years old.
If you have been in a car accident caused by an underage driver who was drinking, you may be able to obtain compensation for your losses through a claim against a social host who supplied alcohol or allowed drinking. If you believe you may have such a third-party claim, The Bob Richardson Law Firm can investigate for you and, if you have a valid claim, pursue compensation for your medical expenses, property damage, lost income and other losses.
Contact us now for a free claim review and information about your legal right to compensation.
Texas Party Hosts Liable for Minors Who Drink
Over many years, Texas has specifically said in its dram shop laws that, while sellers of alcohol have liability for supplying alcohol to intoxicated or underage customers, social hosts do not. But in 2005, the legislature amended the law to say that social hosts who serve alcohol to people younger than 18 may be held liable for injuries a minor-age drinker causes.
In most cases, social host liability is applied to drunk driving accidents caused by an underage drinker who obtained alcohol at a private party. A lawsuit filed by someone injured in the accident seeks to hold the host responsible for the minor’s intoxication, and asks for compensation for injuries and other losses.
Like other personal injury or wrongful death lawsuits, a social host claim must establish the defendant’s negligence (serving alcohol to someone younger than 18), and that his or her negligence was the cause of their injury.
In cases of a large social gathering, there may be witnesses available to support the claim that underage drinking was allowed. Additional evidence of a young person drinking may be available from cellphone records of conversations or texts, or from social media posts (Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram) made by the driver or his or her friends or associates.
Texas law is much tougher when it comes to holding a social host liable for injuries or other harm caused by a drinking-age adult who they served alcohol. We would be happy to discuss the circumstances of your accident involving an intoxicated party goer in a free legal consultation.
Contact an Austin Car Accident Lawyer about Social Host Liability
If an underage driver has caused a drunk driving accident in which you or a loved one of yours was injured, you may be eligible for compensation from the party who supplied the minor with alcohol. Texas’ social host liability law is limited, but you should have compensation for medical bills and other losses if you are entitled to it.
Let The Bob Richardson Law Firm investigate the possibility of a third-party claim in your drunk driving accident. We have obtained positive verdicts and settlements for car accident victims in Austin, Waco and surrounding Texas communities for more than 30 years.
Call us now or fill out our online form today for a free legal consultation about your case.