What to Know About Social Host Liability Laws in New Jersey


If you were injured due to a negligent social host, you may be entitled to legal compensation. Reach out to our skilled Morris County personal injury attorneys today to discuss your case and your options.

What are New Jersey’s social host liability laws?

New Jersey has social host liability laws in place that permit an injured person to seek damages from any social host who supplied alcohol to an intoxicated person of lawful drinking age at a party or similar event when that guest goes on to cause an alcohol-related accident. In order to bring a successful claim, the injured party typically must show:

  • the person who caused the injuries was visibly intoxicated in the presence of the host, or
  • the situations created an “unreasonable risk” of harm to life or property, and
  • the injury resulted from a motor vehicle accident caused by the intoxicated person who was served by the social host.

According to New Jersey law, if a social host negligently serves a minor who then causes harm to someone else, the injured party may have a possible claim against the social host for negligence.

Can I obtain compensation for my injuries?

When it comes to compensation, liability in dram shop and social host cases is represented solely in terms of money damages, paid by the defendant or the defendant’s insurer to the injured person. The most typical types of damages in these cases include:

  • Medical and hospital bills
  • Bills for rehabilitation or therapy
  • Lost wages
  • The value of household services and childcare the injured person would otherwise have performed
    property damage
  • Pain and suffering

It is also important to recognize that the state of New Jersey also allows those hurt in dram shop and social host liability claims to seek punitive damages. Contrary to compensatory damages, punitive damages are intended to punish particularly bad cases of wrongdoing, including gross negligence, recklessness, or intentional bad behavior.

Most New Jersey dram shop claims must be filed within two years of the date of injury in order to be heard in court. However, the facts of every case are different, which is why you should get in touch with an experienced Morris County personal injury attorney as soon as you are able to after suffering an injury to make sure that your rights are covered.


If you have been the victim of the negligence of another in an accident, please contact my office as quickly as possible following the subject accident. It is important to consult with us early on so that we may begin the process of fighting for your rights in regard to any potential claim that you may have. The process is complicated and requires the expertise of a qualified New Jersey personal injury attorney. CONTACT US TODAY!

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