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Many parents believe that it’s safer for kid to drink at home than to drink elsewhere.

In fact, two-thirds of minors receive their alcohol from friends and family. Often times, parents or adults will host parties where they serve alcohol to teens. However, hosting underage drinking parties is not only dangerous but it’s illegal under the “Texas Social Host Law” and can lead to fines and jail time.

Here are 5 important facts that you need to know about social hosting:

Social hosting is providing or serving alcohol to minors in your home or property

Social hosting is providing or serving alcohol to a person under the minimum drinking age of 21.  This includes hosting a party in your home or being responsible for the property where underage drinking occurs even if you are not physically present when it happens.

Current Texas law states that an adult can face jail time and fines for giving alcohol to minors

Giving alcohol to minors is a Class A misdemeanor – just one degree below a felony. Punishment includes up to $4,000 in fines, up to one year in jail, or both, and an automatic 180-day suspension of the offender’s driver’s license according to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code. Additionally, an adult can be sued for damages.

Underage drinking parties can lead to drinking and driving, alcohol poisoning and assault

Underage drinking parties can lead to injuries and death from drinking and driving. In fact, every year, more than 4,700 people die in crashes involving teen drivers, according to Mothers Against Drunk Driving. Problems beyond drinking and driving can occur as well. Limited or no supervision combined with heavy drinking at parties may lead to:

  • Violence and assaults
  • Binge drinking and alcohol poisoning
  • Sexual assault
  • Unwanted or unplanned sexual activity
  • Property damage and vandalism

Click this link to learn more of the consequences of underage drinking.

Call a minor’s parents and the police if a minor brings alcohol into your home

Remember that it’s illegal to have a minor drinking on your property. If it happens, immediately call the parents of the minor and the police

Check IDs and supervise all minors in order to prevent underage drinking at parties

Let guests know that consumption of alcohol is NOT allowed, check the ID of all guests to verify their age, control access to alcohol, and supervise all minors to prevent underage drinking at parties.

Remember that parents and adults can play a critical role in preventing underage drinking and the harmful consequences that come with it. Take proactive measures to ensure no minor drinks under your watch.