Many family-friendly Florida events involve alcohol being served. From weddings and family reunions to larger fairs and festivals, these events must take special precautions to ensure that minors are not served illegally. Failure to take such measures can lead to a lawsuit, as event organizers or vendors may be liable for damage done to minors who have accessed alcohol illegally. Here are some steps that should be taken to prevent the serving of alcohol to minors at an event:
- Responsibly store and serve alcohol. It is imperative to keep excess alcohol in a restricted area that can only be reached by employees and/or servers who are trained and certified to access it. Strict adherence to measures like checking identification and keeping minors away from areas where they are not permitted should also be enforced.
- Ensure your employees and bartenders are well-trained and certified. Event planners and business owners cannot be everywhere at once, as much as they may like to be. Therefore, hiring the right people, who are well-trained and certified, can make all the difference in preventing an incident.
- Have a written plan in place detailing your protective measures. A written and clearly posted “Child Protection Plan” can serve two purposes. First, the documents make it abundantly clear what the rules are so that employees may follow them correctly. Secondly, if there is an incident, a written plan can demonstrate efforts made to protect minors if questioned by law enforcement.
Despite taking these preventative measures, incidents do sometimes still occur; for example, a teenager could be slipped alcohol by an older friend and get caught driving under the influence later that evening.
These types of incidents can lead to lawsuits at licensed establishments or events. Complying with the police and having a firm Child Protection Policy in place can help in these circumstances, though individual consultation from an experienced Florida attorney is important to get exact feedback on the matter.