3 times a business may be liable for a drunk driving crash

On Behalf of | Jan 2, 2024 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

It is against the law to operate a motor vehicle with an elevated blood alcohol concentration (BAC). It is also illegal to drive when someone knows that what they had to drink has affected their driving ability. Despite these laws, drunk drivers are a constant threat on the Missouri roads. They cause collisions that leave other people hurt or kill people. Missouri prosecutors often bring charges against those who drive after drinking, especially if their actions cause provable harm to others. Drunk drivers may also have personal financial liability if they cause a crash.

Those trying to rebuild after a drunk driving wreck may discover that a drunk driver doesn’t have very good insurance coverage. They may need to consider alternative sources of compensation. When is it possible to hold a business responsible for a drunk driving collision in Missouri?

When a business serves a minor

Missouri has a dram shop liability law. Essentially, this law creates an option to file a lawsuit if a business breaks alcohol service laws and a crash occurs. Dram shop laws specifically empower plaintiffs to bring a lawsuit if a bar or restaurant served a minor who then drove while drunk and hurt someone else.

When a business over-serves someone

Young adults aren’t the only ones who don’t know when to stop drinking. Sometimes, those who have had their licenses for years drink too much alcohol and endanger others. Particularly when someone has a substance abuse disorder, they may have a hard time stopping themselves once they start drinking. Businesses have a legal obligation to cease providing additional beverages to someone already showing clear signs of intoxication. When a drunk driver was recently at a bar or restaurant and has a particularly high BAC, dram shop laws may create liability for the business that over-served the driver.

When a drunk driver was on the clock

The last scenario in which a business could be liable for drunk driving crash is when the impaired motorist is an employee on the job. Many companies require that employees occasionally drive or have workers whose primary job responsibility relates to transportation. Typically, employers are liable when their workers cause harm to others through negligence. Therefore, if someone was on the clock when they caused a drunk driving crash, then the people affected by that wreck could potentially take legal action against their employer.

Ultimately, taking legal action against a business may lead to more comprehensive compensation than taking legal action against an individual driver after a drunk driving crash.

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