An Ottawa-based lawyer says the bar available to members of the CLE board could put the organization at risk of lawsuits.
Tom Connolly said the CLE could be held liable should someone drink and drive, causing an injury to another person, but the success of that litigation would be unlikely.
Connolly said a 2006 Supreme Court decision set a high bar for finding hosts, or organizations, responsible.
"The law wasn't going to dictate what people did in their own homes or in private parties or private board meetings. So to that extent, the risk is relatively small," he said.
Connolly says the CLE board could minimize risk by having a qualified person serve alcohol, rather than allowing people to serve themselves.
A spokesperson for the Insurance Bureau of Canada said any organization should think twice about serving alcohol, especially if there is no trained server.
"Unless you have those sorts of checks and balances in place it's probably too risky a venture just to have alcohol that's freely accessible," said Pete Karageorgos, manager of consumer and industry relations for Ontario with the Insurance Bureau of Canada.
If alcohol is loosely controlled, the insurance risk will be higher — as will insurance rates, he noted.