Why Sue the Bar After a DWI Accident?

| January 13, 2014 | Comments (0)

Going out for a few drinks with friends is a great way for some people (those who are able to drink responsibly) to spend a few hours on the weekend. For many people, it is a way to catch up on social conversations as well as bond with friends and family. However, accidents caused by drinking and driving are a very serious matter in Texas.

Texas Dram Shop Law & DWI Crashes

The Bar’s Liability for a DWI Accident

The Texas Dram Shop Act allows an injured individual (or the family of a deceased victim) to sue the establishment which served the drunk driver too many alcoholic drinks. We’d like to remind you though that the bar isn’t being sued for 100% of the damages, rather for their PORTION of responsibility in an accident (as determined by a jury). Everyone who decides to drink knows that they’re responsible for a drunk driving accident (both criminally and civilly). You should always take it upon yourself to pace your alcohol intake, and designate a sober driver.

The Texas Dram Shop Act was first introduced in 1987. Since then, it’s gone through numerous modifications to keep it up to date with related laws. At the moment, it’s possible to sue any establishment which sells alcohol under authority of a license as well as an individual who sells alcoholic drinks. This law also makes individuals serving alcohol to minors culpable to some form of liability with the law being less lenient on them.

The Dram Shop Act was established thanks to a Texas Supreme Court ruling in the  El Chico Corp. v. Poole case of 1987, which stated that alcohol providers had a duty to not to sell or serve alcohol to patrons who were obviously intoxicated.

Bar owners should follow the law (and the rules they agreed to when applying for a liquor license) by not continuing to serve intoxicated patrons. This essentially goes against most bar’s desire to sell as much alcohol as possible to make as much money as possible. A bar’s profitability directly hinges on how much alcohol they sell per night.  Certain rules put forth by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission MUST be followed. It should be noted that serving alcohol in Texas is a right, not a privilege. Offending bars often get their license suspended or revoked following a dram shop lawsuit.

If you’ve been a victim of a drunk driving incident and think that the bar is partly responsible, contact Rasansky Law Firm so that we can review your case (for free). We may be able to help you get the compensation that you deserve following an accident, even if the victim was the drunk driver.

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Category: Lawyer's Advice

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