Hosting a large wedding reception is a big responsibility that has legal ramifications if you don't manage it well. Here are some things you should consider when planning and hosting your gathering.
1. Consider the Guest List.
You might want to have an open invitation event, but having a closed invite gathering would be more manageable. As you plan the number of invitees, you will want to think about the support you can enlist to keep things from getting out of control or to handle an emergency situation. For everyone to feel comfortable, there should be at least five feet of personal space available for each guest, whether indoors or outdoors.
It's wise to think about ways people could get into trouble or hurt so you may want to lock all the doors to the bedrooms and other private areas of the house and make sure they stay locked. While you will want everyone to have an enjoyable time, your goal should be to keep an eye on people and situations.
When you have a family gathering, there are always a few "black sheep" that have questionable behavior or habits. If you feel you need to invite them to avoid issues with others, then make the "others" responsible for seeing to it that they behave themselves. You may also give them fair warning that you will do what is necessary for everyone to be safe, even if that would mean calling the authorities.
2. To avoid issues with neighbors, you will need to do these things.
If you are planning an event for a large number of people on your property, you may need a permit. Fifty or more people descending on a neighborhood all the sudden could be scary to a lot of people, especially if they weren't warned about it beforehand.
The biggest issue that neighbors could have with your party is the noise. You have to remember that others have to work in the morning, or they just want to relax. You could contain loud music to the house especially if your reception is at night, and keep things relatively tame outside.
3. If you serve alcohol you need to monitor it well.
When you plan to serve alcohol at the reception, you could be opening yourself up to civil liability, if you don't monitor how much is served to guests and to whom. In eighteen states there are social liability laws that mean you could be hold liable, if your guests consume too much alcohol at an event you host and then cause personal injury or property damage.
There are nine states that have social host statutes about serving to minors as well. Many states have zero tolerance laws for minors, and this means if they have any alcohol in their system and are driving, they would receive charges.
It would be good to be aware of what is considered legal impairment in your state. For most places that would be a blood alcohol level of 0.08%.
Generally speaking, a 100 lb. person who has had three drinks in a short time could reach that level, and a 200 lb. person would after the fifth drink. If they are also on some kind of medication, even just an OTC allergy medicine, they could be impaired before then. Metabolism of alcohol can be affected by several factors, but a rule of thumb is that it usually takes an hour for your liver to metabolize one drink.
For more information on how avoid legal trouble at your party, contact a professional like Elgart Ronald H.Share
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