California Civil Jury Instructions (CACI)

427. Furnishing Alcoholic Beverages to Minors (Civ. Code, § 1714(d))

[Name of plaintiff] claims [name of defendant] is responsible for [his/ her] harm because [name of defendant] furnished alcoholic beverages to [him/her/[name of minor]], a minor, at [name of defendant]’s home.

To establish this claim, [name of plaintiff] must prove all of the following:

1. That [name of defendant] was an adult;

2. That [name of defendant] knowingly furnished alcoholic beverages to [him/her/[name of minor]] at [name of defendant]’s home;

3. That [name of defendant] knew or should have known that [he/she/[name of minor]] was less than 21 years old at the time;

4. That [name of plaintiff] was harmed [by [name of minor]]; and

5. That [name of defendant]’s furnishing alcoholic beverages to [[name of plaintiff]/[name of minor]] was a substantial factor in causing [name of plaintiff]’s harm.

New December 2011

Directions for Use

This instruction is for use for a claim of social host (noncommercial) liability for furnishing alcohol to a minor. (See Civ. Code, § 1714(d).) For an instruction for commercial liability, see CACI No. 422, Sale of Alcoholic Beverages to Obviously Intoxicated Minors.

Under the statute, the minor may sue for his or her own injuries, or a third person may sue for injuries caused by the minor. (Civ. Code, § 1714(d)(2).) If the minor is the plaintiff, use the appropriate pronoun throughout. If the plaintiff is a third person, select “[name of minor]” throughout and include “by [name of minor]” in element 4.

Sources and Authority

  • Civil Code section 1714 provides in relevant part:

    (c) Except as provided in subdivision (d), no social host who furnishes alcoholic beverages to any person may be held legally accountable for damages suffered by that person, or for injury to the person or property of, or death of, any third person, resulting from the consumption of those beverages.


    (1) Nothing in subdivision (c) shall preclude a claim against a parent, guardian, or another adult who knowingly furnishes alcoholic beverages at his or her residence to a person whom he or she knows or should have known to be under 21 years of age, in which case, notwithstanding subdivision (b), the furnishing of the alcoholic beverage may be found to be the proximate cause of resulting injuries or death.

    (2) A claim under this subsection may be brought by or on behalf of the minor or by a person harmed by the minor.

Secondary Sources

6 Witkin, Summary of California Law (10th ed. 2005) Torts, § 1070

1 Levy et al., California Torts, Ch. 1, Duty and Breach, § 1.21 (Matthew Bender)

3 California Forms of Pleading and Practice, Ch. 19, Alcoholic Beverages: Civil Liability, §§ 19.11, 19.13 (Matthew Bender)

1 California Points and Authorities, Ch. 15A, Alcoholic Beverages: Civil Liability for Furnishing, § 15A.21 et seq. (Matthew Bender)