Kiriakos v. PhillipsAnnotate this Case
These two cases involved the common facts of underage people drinking alcohol on an adult’s property and then leaving that property in a motor vehicle. The alcohol was consumed with the knowledge and consent of the adult property owner. Plaintiffs in both cases filed negligence actions against the property owners, alleging that one defendant caused the death of an individual and that the other defendant caused another individual’s life-threatening injuries. In the first case, the trial court dismissed the complaint for failure to state a claim. In the second case, the trial court granted summary judgment for Defendant. The Supreme Court reversed the judgments of the trial courts, holding (1) adults who allow underage drinking on their property may owe a civil duty to persons injured as a result of such drinking, including the underage persons consuming the alcohol; and (2) Defendants in both cases owed the victims in these cases such a duty.