Q&As

When giving away alcohol at a promotional event, is it possible to exclude liability for personal injury etc where this is as a result of the individual drinking too much alcohol? Or do the normal rules on excluding liability for death/PI etc not apply in such instances?

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Produced in partnership with David Green of 12 King's Bench Walk
Published on LexisPSL on 28/11/2017

The following PI & Clinical Negligence Q&A produced in partnership with David Green of 12 King's Bench Walk provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • When giving away alcohol at a promotional event, is it possible to exclude liability for personal injury etc where this is as a result of the individual drinking too much alcohol? Or do the normal rules on excluding liability for death/PI etc not apply in such instances?

There are two components to this question: first, what is the effect of a notice excluding liability for death and personal injury; and second, what is the liability of the organiser of a promotional event towards a claimant who has drunk excessive alcohol?

The first question is answered by section 2(1) of the Unfair Contract Terms Act 1977 (UCTA 1977), which provides that ‘a person cannot by reference to any contract term or to a notice given to persons generally or to particular persons exclude or restrict his liability for death or personal injury resulting from negligence.

This means that the organiser of the promotional event cannot exclude personal injury liability, or say that any attendee participates entirely at their own risk with regard to health and safety. Any contract term or notice like this is rendered of no effect by UCTA 1977.

This being the case, the organiser’s liability will depend on the circumstances in which the claimant came

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