When it comes to alcohol-related accidents, every state handles liability differently. While a claim can be made against a drunk driver that has caused an accident, for instance, a separate claim can be established against the bar or liquor store that provided or sold alcohol to the intoxicated driver prior to the crash. A Dram Shop Law allows this type of claim in South Carolina, as explained by NOLO. Even so, there is not a specific statute for a dram shop claim in the state. These claims have been authorized through the years from decisions handed down by South Carolina’s Supreme Court.
The court makes it clear that simply selling alcohol to a person is not enough to support a dram shop claim if the person injured someone else. Rather, evidence must support the fact that the alcohol sold to them at the time intoxicated the person, resulting in an accident that injured someone else. Consider the case of Hartfield v.The Getaway Lounge and Grill, Inc., in which the S.C. Supreme Court stated that a bar that violated the state’s law against serving alcohol to a visibly intoxicated adult could be deemed liable if that adult then injured someone.
As a civil claim, a dram shop claim is expressed in terms of monetary damages only. Thus, South Carolina allows injured victims to pursue recovery from alcohol-related accidents on the basis of the state’s criminal statutes regarding the sale of alcohol. For example, the sale of alcohol to an individual under the age of 21 is prohibited, as well as the sale of alcohol to an intoxicated person.
Though legal protection is provided to those injured by drunk drivers on South Carolina roads, a common problem is that many of these drivers do not have adequate insurance coverage to pay for a person’s injuries. Because those licensed to sell alcohol for consumption on-site are required to have significantly greater insurance coverage, a dram shop claim often looks into the possibility that a driver was over-served by a bar or restaurant.
If you’ve been the victim of a drunk driving accident in Charleston, Myrtle Beach or a surrounding community, Attorney Taylor Anderson is an experienced dram shop lawyer that you can trust. With deep knowledge into the complexities of these claims, Taylor asks the right questions and builds a claim that will produce the most favorable outcome possible.
Call the Taylor Anderson Law Firm in Charleston today to schedule a complimentary evaluation of your dram shop claim.
Posted on behalf of Taylor Anderson Law Firm