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SJC Rules Teens That Host “BYOB” Parties Not Liable

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(Photo credit SAEED KHAN/AFP/Getty Images)

(Photo credit SAEED KHAN/AFP/Getty Images)

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BOSTON (CBS) – The state’s highest court rejected an attempt to expand civil laws covering responsibility for underage drinking at parties.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030′s Mark Katic reports.


The case involved the parents of a 16-year-old girl injured in a car accident after being at a “bring your own booze” party.

The key to the ruling was the hostess, a 19-year-old girl, did not supply any alcohol at her party. Instead, the injured 16-year-old was the passenger in a car driven by her drunk boyfriend, who brought his own beer and rum to the party.

The parents of the injured girl sued the party’s hostess.

Attorney Randy Chapman told WBZ NewsRadio 1030 that by the ruling, SJC clearly did not want to expand social host liability laws.

“The person who was responsible in this particular case for the accident would be the person who consumed the alcohol and then drove, and not necessarily someone who just didn’t pay attention to their guests and didn’t provide the alcohol,” said Champman.

Chapman said the ruling puts the responsibility of expanding social host liability laws into the hands of lawmakers.

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