When most people hear about crashes caused by drunk drivers, it’s easy to assume that all liability falls on the intoxicated party. While this is most often the case—and rightfully so—there are some situations when the drunk driver is not solely responsible for the crash.
How is this so?
In Pennsylvania, dram shop liability laws exist that can potentially make other parties liable for the damages caused in a drunk driving crash. In fact, there are multiple parties who can be held accountable should a duty of care be breached.
How Businesses May Be Responsible
Much like a person has the responsibility of driving carefully, restaurants, bars, and other businesses have the responsibility of serving alcohol in a manner that does not put the public in danger. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case and some situations may lead to serious crashes.
Dram shop law exists when an establishment continues to serve alcohol to an individual who is visibly and obviously already intoxicated. The law considers this contributing to the intoxication levels and inhibiting an individual’s ability to drive responsibly.
Should an establishment recognize a person’s intoxication, they should no longer serve them alcohol. If this is not the case, they may be considered partially liable for the damages sustained by an individual should a crash occur.
Can Social Hosts Be Liable?
Imagine a family throwing a party and individuals under the age of 21 are present and drinking. When the minor leaves, if they cause a drunk driving accident, the parents or adults who hosted the party may be considered liable for the injuries to any other party.
By law, if the parents or adults contribute to the intoxication of a minor and the minor causes a crash because of the drunken state, the social hosts can be pursued in legal action.
How Our Philadelphia Dram Shop Liability Lawyers Help
At The Beasley Firm, we know how to prove liability when establishments and other parties contribute to intoxication. We have a history of holding restaurants and other individuals accountable for their actions.
Recently, we recovered $13 million on behalf of a family whose lived one was killed by a drunk driver. This is but one of many substantial recoveries that The Beasley Firm has obtained on behalf of those harmed or killed by drunk drivers and those who recklessly serve drunk patrons.
At the end of the day, we focus on helping our clients seek the most favorable resolution possible.
Call our firm today to discuss your potential case.