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Arizona Social Host Laws: Can You Be Liable For Your Party Guest’s DUI?

December 12, 2023 Legal Team

Dealing with the aftermath of a drunk driving accident can be overwhelming, having to endure serious physical injuries and frustrating legal complexities. Amidst all this, understanding social host liability can surface as a critical resource in your attempt at seeking justice.

Social host laws pertain to scenarios where an individual provides alcohol at events – such as parties or gatherings – and one of the guests ends up causing harm due to their intoxication. This means a social host can be liable for a car accident, though there is likely no liability if someone who was at a gathering simply gets a DUI upon leaving.

If you or a loved one has been injured, it’s key to be aware of the laws related to social host liability after DUI accidents so you know who you are entitled to obtain compensation from. A Mesa car accident lawyer from our firm is prepared to take on your case.

Can You Be Liable For Your Party Guest's DUI in Arizona

Who is a Social Host?

A “social host” is an individual or entity who hosts a social gathering, which could be anything from a house party to a large, organized event. The key point here is that the person or entity offers their premises for use and provides alcohol to guests as part of the function they’re hosting.

Instances where individuals bring their own alcohol don’t necessarily alleviate all responsibility; intricacies like this make it important to speak with a lawyer as soon as possible, whether you’re the victim or the person who is alleged to be responsible.

When is a Social Host Liable For DUI Accidents in Arizona?

In Arizona, a social host’s liability in the event of a DUI accident that causes harm hinges on a couple of key conditions:

Licensed Hosts

If someone is hosting an event and possesses a license to sell alcohol, they could be held liable for any damage caused by those who were sold alcohol at the event and then caused a DUI accident. 

Serving Minors

If alcohol was served or consumed by minors at the gathering – regardless of whether or not the social host has a license to furnish alcohol – the host could potentially be held responsible for harm caused by an intoxicated minor’s DUI accident.

What this means is that a social host without a license to sell alcohol in Arizona cannot be liable for damages as a result of serving alcohol to someone of legal drinking age.

“A person other than a licensee or an employee of a licensee acting during the employee’s working hours or in connection with such employment is not liable in damages to any person who is injured, or to the survivors of any person killed, or for damage to property, which is alleged to have been caused in whole or in part by reason of the furnishing or serving of spirituous liquor to a person of the legal drinking age.”

If You’ve Been Injured in a DUI Accident, Always Work With a Lawyer

Navigating the complex laws surrounding social host liability in Arizona can be quite challenging. If you’re injured due to a drunk driving accident and suspect that a social host may hold some responsibility for your injuries, it is essential to have an experienced personal injury attorney review your circumstances.

Our Mesa drunk driving accident lawyers will bring expertise on the law and how it applies to your specific situation. They will know whether you’re entitled to damages, and if so, they’ll help you calculate what you may be able to recover. 

If you need help after an accident, don’t hesitate to contact us today to schedule a free consultation.