Dram Shop/Social Host Liability

Personal Injury Lawyers serving Englishtown, Newark, Jersey City, Monmouth & Middlesex Counties, and nearby areas of New Jersey

When a host or business serves alcohol, they have a responsibility to ensure they do not recklessly serve individuals who are visibly intoxicated or under legal drinking age.

If you live in the Newark or Jersey City areas of New Jersey and are seeking an experienced dram shop attorney, please contact Shapiro & Sternlieb today by completing the form on this page or calling (732) 617-8050.

What Is Dram Shop Law?

Although the term is unfamiliar to many, alcohol was once sold by a measure of unit called a dram. Today, dram shop laws are used to hold alcohol vendors liable for serving customers who go on to harm others in alcohol-related accidents.

According to the New Jersey Revised Statutes, an individual who is harmed by an intoxicated individual can seek compensation from the entity that served the alcohol to:

  • A visibly intoxicated person
  • A minor who is under the age of 21

Negligence is determined by whether the vendor knew or reasonably should have known that the person served was underage or visibly intoxicated. Even if the intoxicated party who went on to cause the accident also suffered serious injuries, under New Jersey’s dram shop law, they may not seek damages from the vendor.

Social Host Liability in New Jersey

When you prepare to entertain guests, there are a number of things you may consider: invitations, menus and entertainment. However, if you plan on serving alcohol at your event, you should consider your party’s alcohol policy. If someone seems intoxicated and you continue to serve that person alcohol, you could be liable for injuries the driver causes to a third party.

Injured third parties can pursue compensation from a social host if the host provided alcohol to an intoxicated individual who causes harm and:

  • The individual was visibly intoxicated in the presence of the host
  • Alcohol was served with reckless disregard of the consequences
  • Serving alcohol to the intoxicated person created an unreasonable risk of harm to property or life
  • The intoxicated person served by the host went on to cause an auto accident that resulted in injuries

Damages in a Dram Shop or Social Host Liability Claim

Common damages in social host liability and dram shop cases include:

  • Medical expenses
  • Rehabilitation costs
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Property damage
  • The value of childcare household services that the injured person otherwise would have performed

Contact Shapiro & Sternlieb, LLC Today

To discuss your dram shop or social host liability case for free with an experienced lawyer, call us today at (732) 617-8050. We proudly help clients from Newark and Jersey City, New Jersey.