NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – If a friend drinks at your house and later gets into an accident, you’re considered liable, even if that friend was 21.
According to a Massachusetts law called Social Host Liability, if a person of or under age leaves your house after drinking and injures another person, you’re liable because you had control over the situation. Those same rules apply to hotel rooms and beach rentals.
Kassandra Fernandes of South Hadley told 22News, “It would allow me to then tell my guests that they’re allowed to stay at my place and not go anywhere that night, the whole put the keys above the sink would be something I’d definitely encourage.”
If you’re charged criminally, homeowners insurance probably will deny you coverage. The Law Office of William Kickham told 22News your best bet is carrying umbrella insurance on your homeowner’s policy and above liability limits. If your guest injures themselves only, you’ll only be liable if that person is under the age of 18.