Dram Shop Claims
Tavern & Restaurants Owners Must be Aware of Serving Alcohol Limits
In drunk-driving accidents, the inebriated vehicle operator is held responsible for damages and crimes committed behind the wheel. But, what about the source of the alcohol? Are those who continue to sell and serve alcohol to intoxicated patrons also responsible to contributing to an alcohol-related accident?
The answer is a resounding “Yes.” While it is the responsibility of the drinking party to know when to say “enough”, any establishment that continues to serve to customers who are visibly intoxicated are also responsible. Oklahoma enforces what are commonly known as “Dram Shop Laws”. An establishment must refuse to sell alcohol to anyone who shows signs of intoxication, especially if they’re driving. Otherwise, that establishment can be held responsible for damages, as well as the drunk driver.
Are You Aware of Oklahoma Dram Shop Laws?
Oklahoma law clearly states: “No person shall knowingly sell, deliver, or furnish alcohol to any person under 21, to an intoxicated person, or to any person who has been adjudged insane or mentally deficient.” If a retail location or establishment violates any of these conditions, then they should be held accountable for restitution of damages. They may even have their license to serve alcohol revoked.
There are many steps that a serving establishment can take in order to prevent drunk driving. In order to prevent visibly intoxicated customers from being served a business can:
- Train employees in responsible alcohol service
- Refuse entrance or service to visibly intoxicated customers
- Carefully control the amount of alcohol served in drinks
- Develop clear policies and procedures to prevent over-serving
- Strongly support employee’s decisions to cut-off alcohol service to visibly intoxicated person
In order to prevent minors from being served a business can:
- Check all customers’ IDs before serving them alcohol
- Train bouncers and bartenders to spot fake IDs
- Post signage that reflects the business’s ID checking policy
- Invest in an ID card scanning system
Carefully monitor tables where alcohol is served and minors are seated
If you or a family member has been the victim of a drunk-driving accident and feel that the serving establishment did not take the necessary steps towards selling alcohol within the limits of the law, then contact Graves McLain to get the help and legal guidance you need during difficult times. An experienced attorney will review the details of your case and determine the best course of action.
Call Graves McLain, Serious Lawyers for Serious Injuries.