Hosting A Party? Make Sure You’re Covered > Tips to help

Posted On December 10, 2006

Filed under Christmas Parties

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The following is a summary of tips to help party hosts protect themselves and prevent holiday party accidents >

Before hosting a party in your home, check your home insurance policy or contact your agent to verify that you have adequate liability coverage.

Before hosting a party in your home, contact your attorney to determine the social host liability laws in your state.

Limit your party guest list to people you know personally.

Be absolutely sure that everyone drinking at your party is above legal drinking age. Many homeowners or renters policies provide no liability coverage at all in the event you have served alcohol to minors.

Avoid self-service bars; serve the drinks yourself so you can monitor each guest’s condition and not serve those who are visibly intoxicated.

Provide alternative non-alcoholic beverages as well as filling food for guests. Empty stomachs lead to higher blood alcohol contents.

Schedule entertainment or activities that do not involve alcohol. If the primary party activities are drinking games, naturally the guests will be drinking more.

Stop serving alcohol at least one hour before the party is scheduled to end.

Arrange transportation or overnight accommodations for those who cannot or should not drive home.

Remain sober yourself, always remembering your responsibilities as a party host.

For especially large parties, consider hiring an off-duty police officer to discretely monitor guests’ sobriety or handle any alcohol-related problems as guests leave.

Homeowners and renters can obtain home insurance or have their insurance questions answered by calling or visiting a Trusted Choice agency in their area. A Trusted Choice agent represents several different insurance companies and can shop around to find consumers the best or most customized insurance policy to meet their needs. A Trusted Choice agency locator is available at

“Of course, there are no guaranteed ways to protect yourself against lawsuits,” Flannagan says. “But accepting the reality that they can happen to you and making sure you have adequate liability protection in your home insurance policy are steps you need to take. “Our survey clearly shows that most Americans are not putting a little time aside before their party to review insurance coverages or learn more about the social host liability laws in their respective states. Being proactive now can potentially save you from a lawsuit later,” concludes Flannagan.

For additional tips about other holiday and insurance topics, consumers can visit or