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Can Parents Let Kids Drink Over the Holidays?

Posted on in Personal Injury Lawsuits

IL injury lawyerFor many families, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and other winter holidays involve alcohol. Whether it is eggnog, wine, or a special Christmas cocktail, many people enjoy alcoholic drinks over the holidays. Some parents find no harm in letting their teenagers share in the holiday spirits. However, letting your own child drink and letting someone else’s child drink are two different matters under Illinois law. Adults who let minors drink alcohol can face legal consequences under Illinois’s social host law.

Illinois Law Regarding Alcohol Consumption by Minors

In Illinois, you have to be at least 21 years old to drink. However, many parents wonder if they can let their underage children drink on special occasions. According to Illinois law, you may let your children drink alcohol if they are at home and under your supervision. You cannot let your children drink at a restaurant or bar. You also cannot let other people’s children drink. In fact, doing so can lead to significant legal consequences.

Homeowner Liability for Underage Drinking

You may decide that your underage child is mature enough to handle an alcoholic drink this holiday season. This is up to your discretion as a parent or legal guardian. However, parents who allow minors other than their own children to drink may find themselves in legal trouble. Providing alcohol to minors is a Class A misdemeanor in Illinois. You can also face civil legal ramifications. Illinois’s Social Host Law makes adults responsible for injuries and deaths caused by underage drinking.

Legal Options If Your Child Was Injured After Being Served Alcohol

Parents are allowed to provide alcohol to their own children in limited circumstances, but they cannot provide alcohol to other people who are underage. If your child was in a car accident or was otherwise injured after drinking at someone else’s house, you may be able to hold the homeowner liable for damages. Under social host liability, the person who served the child alcohol may be required to reimburse you for your child’s medical bills and other damages.

Contact a Waukegan Social Host Liability Attorney

Adults who serve alcohol to minors may face criminal and civil consequences. If your child was injured or killed after drinking alcohol at another party’s house, you may be able to take legal action against the adult who provided the alcohol. To learn more, contact the Lake County personal injury lawyers at Salvi & Maher, L.L.C. Our skilled team can evaluate your case and help you explore your legal options. Call us at 847-662-3303 today for a free, no-obligation consultation.





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