A new law taking effect January 1 in Illinois adds more penalties for adults who host parties in their home with underage drinking.
The state's current social responsibility law allows those parents to be sued for allowing teenagers to drink. The changes make it a Class A misdemeanor for parents to host such a gathering. Fines will be at least $500. If the underage drinking results in injury or death, it becomes a Class 4 felony.
Adults who discover minors drinking on their property won’t be charge if they call police to stop the party.
The Illinois Liquor Control Commission say most minors who drink get the alcohol from friends or family.
And more than 300 law enforcement agencies across Illinois will step up drunken driving patrols and seatbelt checks over the New Year’s holiday.
Crash data from the Illinois Department of Transportation show that 42 people have died on Illinois roads in the last five years. About 40 percent of those involved a driver who had been drinking.