Tips for parents

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Underage-drinking laws:

You cannot give alcohol to your teen’s friends under the age of 21, even in your own home, even with their parents’ permission.

You cannot knowingly allow a person under 21, other than your own child, to remain in your home or property while consuming or possessing alcohol.

If you break the law you face:

Up to one year in jail; up to a $2,000 fine.

If someone is injured or killed as a result of the alcohol you supplied, you could be charged with a felony.

You can be sued for damages if you supply alcohol to anyone under 21 who is injured, or who injures someone else while under the influence. Homeowner’s insurance policy may not provide adequate liability protection when serious injury occurs. This applies even if you are not home at the time.

Things parents can do:

Refuse to supply alcohol to anyone under 21.

Be at home when your teen has a party.

Make sure that alcohol is not brought onto your property.

Create alcohol-free opportunities in your home so teens feel welcome.

Report underage drinking to police.

When going out of town, do not allow any unsupervised gatherings. Have another adult stay with your teen, or have your teen stay with a responsible adult or ask a neighbor to check in frequently.

Source: Parents Who Host Lose the Most Coalition; Healthy Androscoggin

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