The holiday season is in full swing and many of us are attending or hosting holiday parties. Sadly, sometimes a guest becomes intoxicated and may cause a motor vehicle collision which injures an innocent motorist or passenger. As the host, are you legally responsible for the driver or passenger’s injuries?
Fortunately, Arizona law protects the party host, and offers social host immunity (A.R.S. § 4-301). Provided that the host does not serve alcohol to someone under the age of twenty-one, then the host is immune from liability for any harm caused by an intoxicated guest. Of course, for the immunity to apply the social host may not be a liquor licensee (for example, a bar or restaurant that has a state-issued license to sell alcohol), but must truly be “hosting” the event, not charging for alcoholic beverages, and serving only those of legal drinking age. Despite the immunity provided by law, responsible party hosts should consider making a ride share program available for their guests (for example, Uber and Lyft).
Be safe this holiday season, folks. Happy Holidays from DeFusco Law!
DeFusco Law, P.L.C. represents victims who have suffered serious injuries and families who have lost a loved one because of the negligence of others. We maintain a low-volume practice dedicated to providing personal service to our clients, often during the most difficult times in their lives. Please keep us in mind if you know someone needing our services.