Dram Shop and Social Host Liability

Dram Shop and Social Host Liability

In Georgia, personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits can also be filed against a person or business in certain situations where their negligent or unlawful sale or service of alcohol contributes to an automobile, motorcycle or pedestrian accident. These are called “Dram Shop Liability” cases where the defendant is a bar, nightclub, restaurant, casino, liquor store or other commercial enterprise, and “Social Host Liability” cases where the defendant is a person or noncommercial establishment. The phrase “Dram Shop Liability” applies where the defendant is in the business of selling alcohol for profit, and the phrase “Social Host Liability” applies where the defendant’s service of alcohol was gratuitous or not-for-profit.

By statute (O.C.G.A. § 51-1-40) in Georgia, Dram Shop and Social Host defendants can be held liable for injury or deaths to innocent motorists or pedestrians in each of the following two situations:

(1) There was an unlawful sale or service of alcohol to an underage driver (someone under the lawful drinking age of 21), knowing that such person will soon be driving a motor vehicle; and/or

(2) There was a sale or service of alcohol to someone (either younger or older than 21) who was in a “state of noticeable intoxication,” knowing that such person will soon be driving a motor vehicle.

Georgia Dram Shop Liability Lawyer

The trial attorneys at Ragland Law Firm, LLC have considerable experience handling Dram Shop and Social Host Liability lawsuits in Atlanta and other areas of Georgia. They have actually taken some of these cases all the way to trial. In particular, Daniel Ragland considers Dram Shop Liability to be one of his primary areas of expertise. To find out more about this area of the law, go to our Dram Shop Liability Practice Center.

Contact us in Atlanta at (770) 407-7300 or toll free at (866) 526-5891 if you have been injured or a family member has been killed by a drunk driver who was unlawfully or negligently provided alcohol by an individual or business establishment.