Can You Sue a Bar for Overserving a Drunk Driver?
Some of the most dangerous accidents involve drinking and driving. When a drunk person gets behind the wheel, they have absolutely no control of their vehicle. Their reaction time is slower. They don’t appreciate the risks. They tend to drive recklessly and without concern for other drivers on the road.
When the cops arrive at an accident scene, they’ll check to see if either of the driver are under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If they confirm that one of the drivers were drunk, they’ll arrest them for drunk driving. They’ll also ask where they were drinking.
If the drunk driver is honest with the cops, he’ll tell him exactly where he was partying. They could have been at a friend’s house. Or they may have been at a bar or nightclub. If they were over-served at a business, the company may be partially responsible for the accident.
As the victim in a drunk driving accident, you may have a claim against the bar or restaurant that over-served the other driver. Your Augusta car accident attorney will file a claim against their insurance company. If they refuse to pay, he’ll have no choice but to file a lawsuit against the bar or nightclub.
Who Can Be Held Responsible for Over Serving a Drunk Driver?
When your Augusta car accident attorney investigates your case, he’s going to check to see where the defendant was drinking. He’ll talk to some of the bartenders at the club. He may even reach out to the people the driver was out with to see how much he had to drink.
Many bars and restaurants have video cameras installed. Your lawyer can review these tapes to see how many drinks the defendant was given. He can check the times of when each drink was purchased. He can also see how the defendant was behaving. If he was obviously drunk, the bar may be held liable for over serving the defendant.
The defendant himself may admit how many drinks he actually had. If he’s already been convicted of a DUI, he may be more honest than you think. And, his attorney may bring the bar into the lawsuit as a second defendant. If he believes his client was over served, he’ll want the bar to bear some of the brunt of the lawsuit.
What are the Odds the Bar Will Be Held Liable?
In order to prove that the bar was responsible for over serving the other driver, your car accident attorney will have to prove negligence. In order to do this, he must show the following:
- the bar had a duty to not over serve their patrons
- They breached this duty
- You were injured
- Your injuries were caused by the defendant’s being over served at the bar
As far as the duty is concerned, the bar absolutely has a duty of care. Every state has something called dram laws. These laws hold bar and restaurant owners responsible for how much alcohol they serve their customers.
It’s also going to be pretty obvious whether you were injured or not. All your lawyer has to do is show medical records demonstrating that you were hurt.
The hard part is proving that the bar owner breached his duty. There are lots of things the bar can do that will make them liable in a drunk driving case:
- The bar served alcohol to a minor and never asked for proof of age
- They served someone who appeared to be intoxicated
- They served someone after hours
- The bar served someone who would probably become intoxicated after consuming the drinks
It’s your Augusta car accident lawyer’s job to prove that the bar was negligent. It will be easier to do this if the defendant is cooperative. Knowing that he’ll pay less if the bar is also held responsible, the defendant may be more likely to testify against the bar.
Call a Car Accident Attorney in Augusta, Georgia
If you’ve been injured in a drunk driving accident, you need to call a car accident attorney in Augusta, Georgia. He can review your case and let you know what it may be worth. He can also reach out to the defendant’s lawyer and see if his client’s willing to testify against the bar.
Call and schedule your initial consultation today. The consultation is free and you pay nothing until you win your case. You need to focus on recovering from your injuries. Let your car accident lawyer handle the legal side of things.