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Your teen's party could land you in legal hot water

You and your spouse are approaching a milestone anniversary and have planned a romantic cruise vacation. Accordingly, you arranged for your teenager to spend the week with relatives to ensure supervision is maintained.

But teens can be tricksters, and yours convinced your parents that he needed to work a closing shift at his fast-food job. Little did they know he had planned a teen party at your home during your absence.

If the above occurs, you could have far more worries than some missing liquor and a little party damage. If your home was used to serve underage drinkers alcohol, you could face premises liability lawsuits from any injuries or damages to the underage teens or others who might be harmed by their impairment.

But you didn't know it was going on, you might argue. How could you be liable for somebody's car wreck injuries?

It doesn't matter. Under the law, you bear responsibility for the goings-on in your home whether you are present at the time or not. Worse, there could even be criminal charges stemming from the incident under some circumstances.

It's a sobering thought indeed. Looking at it from the perspective of one who was injured in a car accident with an intoxicated teen, however, you can likely see where it was necessary for them to pursue a claim for damages to cover their medical bills and other costs of the accident.

Likewise, should you or your child suffer damages related to an unsupervised teen house party where booze and drugs flowed freely, you have the option of seeking legal redress through the Louisville civil court system.

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Ewing & Willis
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