Hosted by Campbell, Campbell, Edwards & Conroy


Cases tell the story of the social host liability law. In some instances they provide the impetus for enacting or amending a social host statute. In others they clarify the meaning or application of a statute or the common law. Still others serve as examples of tragedies caused by the furnishing of alcohol to minors. The cases discussed include both criminal and civil actions.


Prior to the amendment of the Social Host Law (codified at M.G.L.c. 138, § 34) in 2000, the law in Massachusetts generally held a social host liable for injury to an innocent third party caused by an intoxicated guest only when the host actually supplied or provided the alcohol to the guest. Courts rarely found a host liable for injuries sustained by the guest himself. The following cases shaped the development of the social host law in Massachusetts:

Central to Amendment of Law

Post Amendment of the Social Host Law