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Parental responsibility for crashes caused by underage drinking

On Behalf of | Nov 16, 2021 | Liquor Liability

Parents know that their adolescent children cannot legally drink alcohol. However, they may not always consider the legal consequences of the parties that their teenagers throw. If teens serve alcohol at a party, parents may find themselves responsible if something happens to one of the guests.

The State of Minnesota takes a firm stance on underage drinking.

Minnesota regulations

The Minnesota Legislature says that while adolescents may drink at home when their parents are present, they cannot legally consume alcohol at any other place. Additionally, minors cannot misrepresent their age. When they go over to another person’s house, teenagers cannot tell adults that they are 21. They also cannot use a false ID to purchase alcohol for themselves and for other minors.

Additionally, adults cannot provide alcohol to minors who are not their children. They cannot purchase a drink for teenagers or send them to buy more alcohol.

Social host liability

According to the Minnesota Prevention Resource Center, adults may be liable if adolescents drink alcohol at their house. Many parents may wonder how this is possible if their teenager served alcohol at a party without their knowledge. Many counties across the state have social host liability laws. These laws hold people responsible for injuries that an intoxicated guest causes to other people. Because of this, parents may be liable for the alcohol that minors drink when adults are not present. Adolescents may drink and cause an accident as they drive home. Adults may face misdemeanor charges for providing an environment in which teenagers could access alcohol.

To prevent these incidents and protect their families, parents may want to stress the dangers of underage drinking to their teenagers.