When one person’s reckless actions result in tragedy in San Antonio, it may be easy to simply assign all the blame to said individual. Yet what about those who may have enabled him or her? Assigning vicarious liability may be difficult given the complexities and challenges involved in trying to link the actions of a third party to an incident in which that party may have not been directly involved. There are times, however, when the families of those killed in incidents of reckless believe they have ample evidence to prove that outside parties played a hand in the deaths of their loved ones.
That is the claim being made by a California man after he lost his son in a car accident in 2016. The driver that hit his son was intoxicated, and has since been charged with involuntary manslaughter. Yet the victim’s father believes that responsibility for his son’s death also lies with the establishments that served the drunk driver at the center of this case alcohol. In a recent lawsuit, the victim’s father claims that the employees of two local bars continued to serve drinks to the driver even after it was clear that he was drunk.
Dram shop laws refer to statutes that enable accident victims (and/or their families) to assign liability to establishments or social hosts who serve alcohol to a driver that later causes an accident. Typically, however, simply serving the one who caused the accident drinks may not be enough to invoke this statute. One must claim (as was done in the aforementioned case), that an establishment’s employees knew (or should have known) that the patron was intoxicated, yet continued to serve him or her anyway. One wanting to initiate a dram shop liability case may find an attorney to be a reliable ally.