Florida bars may have some responsibility if a driving under the influence (DUI) accident occurs after a patron leaves the establishment, gets behind the wheel, and ends up in an accident. Liability is covered under Florida Statute 768.125 - Liability for injury or damage resulting from intoxication, also known as Florida’s dram shop statute.
The statute covers anyone, including bars and restaurants, who knowingly sells or furnishes alcoholic beverages to a person who is either under the age of 21 or "habitually addicted to the use of any or all alcoholic beverages."
If bartenders continue to serve drinks to a patron who is intoxicated to the point that he or she could be a danger to themselves or others, the bar may be liable for "over-serving." When a patron exhibits slurring speech, confusion, or trouble standing or walking, bartenders should stop serving drinks to that patron. If they do not, they are considered knowingly increasing the chances of an accident should the patron plan to drive after leaving the bar.
Florida bars have been found liable for injuries or deaths caused by drunk drivers who drove after an irresponsible bartender over-served the patron and did not reasonably interfere with the patron's getting behind the wheel after imbibing. One such case in August 2019 involved two Tallahassee bars that were found to have willfully served alcohol to underage patrons that caused a hit-and-run DUI accident, leaving a woman with permanent brain damage.
“We at Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. represent the victims of drunk driving accidents. We passionately advocate for the rights of our clients who have suffered injuries or wrongful death caused by intoxicated drivers. If these intoxicated drivers were over-served at a bar, we will aggressively represent our clients in seeking the compensation they deserve. We are available 24/7, and there are no costs or attorney fees until we receive a monetary recovery,” said Fort Myers Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Randall Spivey.
Fort Myers Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Randall L. Spivey is a Board Certified Trial Attorney – the highest recognition for competence bestowed by the Florida Bar and a distinction earned by just one percent (1%) of Florida attorneys. He has handled over 2,000 personal injury and wrongful death cases throughout Florida. For a free and confidential consultation to discuss your legal rights, contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A., in Lee County at 239.337.7483 or toll-free at 1.888.477.4839, or by email to Randall@SpiveyLaw.com. Visit SpiveyLaw.com for more information. You can contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A.in Charlotte County at 941.764.7748 and in Collier County at 239.793.7748.