CALA issues tips to keep litigation out of Christmas stocking

By The SE Texas Record | Dec 8, 2014

With office parties and social gatherings filling calendars between now and the New Year, a tort reform group is offering tips to keep party-goers from become parties in a lawsuit.

“By keeping a few simple tips in mind, you can keep a lump of coal or a lawsuit out of your stockings and make sure your holidays shine,” said Diane Davis of East Texans Against Lawsuit Abuse.

If hosting a holiday party, Davis suggests taking responsible measures to create a safe event, including transportation and safeguards to keep guests from over-indulging.

The group issued the following tips:

• For parties in your home, plan transportation for your guests, including designated drivers or cabs for a safe ride home, and have ample and appealing nonalcoholic beverages for your designated drivers;

• For office parties, consider a bus or taxi service for your employees;

• Avoid providing a self-service bar, opting instead for a bartender well-versed in identifying underage and intoxicated drinkers;

• Halt the flow of alcoholic beverages long before the party ends; and

• Take action if a guest does overindulge, arranging for transportation home.

“A few common sense steps can help ensure holiday parties are memorable but safe from lawsuits,” said Connie Scott of Bay Area Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse (BACALA). “Stopping lawsuit abuse starts with each of us taking responsibility and using common sense.”

Hazel Meaux of Texans Against Lawsuit Abuse said party-goers should be encouraged to take personal responsibility for their own actions.

“Holiday festivities shouldn't be dampened by the threat of a lawsuit,” she said.

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