Drunk drivers kill an average of 10,000 or more people in the US each year. Some of these fatal car accidents occur because businesses overserve patrons who are already intoxicated. Like many other states, New Jersey has what are called “dram shop laws.” These are laws that can make a business liable for continuing to serve patrons who are intoxicated. New Jersey businesses may be liable for drunk driving accidents if:
- The individual who was served alcohol was visibly intoxicated.
- The business knew or should have known the person they were serving alcohol was under 21 years old.
We recently obtained an $875,000 settlement against a New Jersey business in a classic dram shop case. In this instance, we conducted a thorough investigation to determine the drunk driver’s impairment before he injured our client. You can read more about this case by continuing to explore our website.
What About Social Host Liability for Drunk Driving Accidents?
New Jersey also has laws that could hold hosts responsible for drunk driving accidents. This is where a person hosting a party can be liable for damages. For instance, let’s say that someone left a St. Patrick’s Day party and killed another motorist in a drunk driving accident. The host of that party may be liable if the following conditions are met:
- The host of the party provided alcohol to the guest who caused the accident, and
- The individual was visibly intoxicated in front of the host, or the alcoholic beverages were “provided under circumstances manifesting reckless disregard of the consequences to another”, and
- The circumstances created an unreasonable risk of harm to life or property
Therefore, there could be options for injured motorists or their grieving family members to recover compensation from a business or host of a party. We encourage you to contact our New Jersey personal injury lawyers if you or a loved one have questions about compensation after a drunk driving accident. The attorneys at Targan & Pender, P.C. have experience with these types of cases.