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Could Hosting A Super Bowl Party Get You Sued?

4:12 PM, Feb 1, 2014   |    comments
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Columbia, SC (WLTX) -- A Midlands lawyer says if you're hosting a Super Bowl party, there's some things you should be aware of.

"As the host you've got to take charge and make sure that they're playing it safe while they're at your house," Attorney Christian Stegmaier said.

It's not only chips and pizza, but beer and liquor that are staples at most Super Bowl parties. But as the host, what are your responsibilities when you're doling out spirits to your friends?

"Historically in South Carolina, the courts have held that social hosts have no liability for any circumstances involving an adult who might have had too much to drink and either injures himself or somebody else," he said.

Stegmaier focuses on hospitality law and said there are exceptions.

"They're always thinking of different and new ways to file suit and test the law and we don't want social hosts to be the test case this time around." he said.

Stegmaier said moving the party to a bar or restaurant can take the liability off you and onto the bartender.

"You have a duty not to over serve somebody and if you do knowingly over serve somebody who goes out and injures a third party there's definite liability for that," Stegmaier said.

But, better safe than sued.

"What you want to do is moderate the service of alcohol as well you want to have plenty of non-alcoholic beverages available, you want to have food available. During commercial breaks or something like that you might want to take the focus off the drinking and maybe go outside and throw the football around," Stegmaier said. "You can't be too careful because friends or not they might ultimately make a claim or file a lawsuit against you."

According to the latest survey by the Retail, Advertising and Marketing Association, almost 35 million people plan to host a Super Bowl Party.

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