With any accident involving a drunk driver, there is often a presumption that the only person responsible for the accident is the driver. Sure, the ultimate negligence rest on the shoulders of the driver who made the decision to drive a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, but the blame does not have to end there. In some scenarios, other parties may share blame for your injuries.
Restaurant and Bar Owners
States do not just pass out liquor licenses to restaurants and bar owners easily. There is a process, and with the license comes a great deal of responsibility. One responsibility is a duty to always keep safety paramount.
A part of going about this goal involves knowing when to refuse alcohol to someone who is already intoxicated. If a bar or restaurant continues to provide alcohol to someone who is severely intoxicated and the person gets into an accident, the business can be held liable for the part they played in the event.
Most people understand that businesses have a duty to protect their employees, but they also have to protect their customers. Consider a customer waiting in the parking lot of a pizza shop, for instance. Assume the employer is a delivery driver who had been drinking on the job.
If the pizza shop was aware that the driver had been drinking and allowed the employee to continue to drive the delivery vehicle — their actions can be deemed negligent. This negligence could then open them up to legal liability.
Parents or Guardians
Unfortunately, there are some parents and caregivers that will give children in their home alcohol. Although the child may have voluntarily consumed the alcohol, the adult that provided the drink is often more at-fault than the child.
In this scenario, if the teenager is intoxicated and hits someone, the person who provided the alcohol can face an accident claim against them as well.
Filing an accident claim against a drunk driver is complicated but filing additional claims against other parties that are at fault is harder. It is best to have attorney representation to ensure your rights are protected. To ensure you receive the compensation you deserve, you should have an attorney examine your situation so that all parties responsible are held accountable.
Never assume that only the driver is to blame. Everyone who has played a part should be held responsible. Make sure you exercise all your options and contact a drunk driving accident attorney as needed.