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What All Texans Need to Know About Dram Shop Laws

Rocio Murillo July 24, 2015

It's no surprise that Dallas is one of the nation's leading cities in drunk driving-related deaths.With DFW's rapid growth, and the recent end of the area's patchwork prohibition, the alcohol-related death rate has spiked since 2010. 

Bars and restaurants that overserve patrons can be held responsible for injuries and deaths caused by the drunk drivers they served. Lack of records or lack of knowledge of the service are not excuses. In fact, bad record-keeping and poor training standards can cause huge problems. 

So, what can you do to help protect the community and yourselves from being sued and/or endangering innocent victims? First, let us define The Texas Dram Shop Act. The act imposes liability on a bar or restaurant owner’s negligence in serving alcohol to an intoxicated person who causes injury to another person and, in some cases, even to themselves. For example, if a restaurant’s employee serves alcohol to a person who is obviously intoxicated, and that person leaves the restaurant and gets into a car accident and injures another person while drunk driving, the employee and the restaurant itself can be sued for the injuries the drunk driver caused to the injured person. It’s important that businesses who serve alcohol to customers educate themselves and their employees on their responsibilities under the Dram Shop Act, the possible consequences for breaking the law, and, most importantly, how to avoid being sued. How you can you protect your employees and your establishment:Texas has a “Safe Harbor Provision” which protects businesses and their employees who serve alcohol from being sued under the Dram Shop Act. If an employer:                       1) Requires its employees to be TABC certified;            2) The employee actually is TABC certified; and            3) The employer does not directly or indirectly encourage the employee to over-serve alcohol to customers.

The team of attorneys and staff at Chad West Law are now offering COMPLIMENTARY Dram Shop Act training to bars, restaurants, and their employees on how to comply with the Dram Shop Act and avoid being sued or endangering the community! Call us at (469) 416-6122 to schedule a free training seminar. 

Let's keep Dallas roads safe by increasing awareness!

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