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Murphy Battista in the News

Bill Dick discusses social host liability with CBC in wake of costly West Vancouver house party

March 15, 2018

A West Vancouver incident where a teenage girl rented a home using her parents credit card and threw a party causing $20,000 worth of damage, serves as a warning to think about protecting yourself against liability for bodily injuries to guests, particularly in the age of the new shared economy and the rise of services like AirBnB and VRBO. As Bill Dick noted in the CBC article by Jason Proctor, in some cases the nature of the rental arrangement may void or exceed your insurance coverage and it’s not uncommon for claims for serious bodily injury to exceed the typical $1 million policy limits. Bill recommends that if you are going to rent out your property, at a minimum you should be thinking about your potential exposure in an unforeseen or worst-case scenario.

The other area where this kind of liaiblity arises in the social host context (think teen grad parties), where the combination of alcohol and teenagers raises the risk of occupier’s liability for any alcohol-related injuries that occur as the result of the conditions of the property or even the activities of other guests. You can find out more about what you need to know before hosting that grad party here.

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