Can a bar or restaurant be liable in a drunk driving case in Pennsylvania?


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A: Yes, bars and restaurants can be held legally liable in a situation where a patron who is negligently served alcohol later gets behind the wheel and causes an accident. In Pennsylvania, this is known as dram shop liability.

Drunk driving accidents almost always result in significant injuries or death. Those who are injured in a drunk driving accident may be able to obtain financial recovery for their injuries, not only from the drunk driver, but also any business which negligently served alcohol to the driver. In addition, in some circumstances, private individuals may be liable for serving their guests alcohol.

In most situations involving civil liability of a bar, restaurant or other alcohol service establishment, the issue is whether a bartender or server served a patron who was visibly intoxicated. In these kinds of cases, immediate investigation will be helpful, in order to locate eyewitnesses who can testify to how much alcohol was served and whether the person appeared intoxicated. For more information, contact a Pennsylvania drunk driver injury and accident lawyer.

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Published: September 9, 2012