Every business that is licensed to serve alcohol on its premise, specifically for consumption on said premise, is liable under the Missouri City dram shop Laws. This means they have a duty of care to the public, a duty to refuse service to anyone who is already obviously intoxicated.
If a dram shop serves an obviously intoxicated person alcohol, they may be liable for any accidents that person then goes on to cause, especially if they are allowed to get into their vehicle without being stopped.
There are countless fatalities every year that occur as a result of drunk driving accidents. When obviously intoxicated individuals are allowed to get into their vehicle and drive home, they are committing a DUI and drastically increasing their chances of causing a crash that may result in the wrongful death or serious injury of an innocent individual.
Under Missouri City’s dram shop laws, if you or a loved one have been involved in an accident caused by a drunken driver, you are entitled to seek compensation for your damages and injuries.
At Abraham Watkins, we fight for the justice and fair treatment of our clients. We have been serving the state of Texas since 1951, and are one of the longest-serving law firms in the state. We have dealt with every form of personal injury claim under the sun, including numerous DUI and dram shop law cases.
If you want to seek fair and reasonable compensation for your injuries and damages, you should contact us immediately. Our approach to our attorney-client relationship is second to none and we fight aggressively on behalf of our accident victims.
Our phones lines are always manned, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so give us a call at 713-535-9319 and arrange a free consultation today!
Missouri City Dram Shop Liability Explained
When it comes to dram shop law, a venue has a legal responsibility to ensure that it does not serve any customers alcohol if they are clearly and visibly intoxicated.
These laws were introduced to help manage the worryingly high number of serious and tragic accidents that happen on the roads of Texas when intoxicated drivers are allowed to get into their vehicles.
In Missouri City, dram shop laws allow victims to seek compensation if they believe a venue has acted negligently by overserving an obviously intoxicated person that was then allowed to get into their vehicle.
Do I Have a Dram Shop Case?
In Missouri City, dram shop laws require evidence to prove that a venue served alcohol to the guilty party when they were obviously intoxicated.
If you have evidence that suggests this person was served alcohol while intoxicated and was allowed to get into their vehicle without being stopped by the venue, you may be entitled to seek compensation if they have then gone on to cause an accident resulting in injury or death.
For the best possible chances of full and fair compensation from your dram shop claim, you should get in touch with a team of Missouri City personal injury attorneys that are experienced in dealing with drunk driving incidents.
You should always ensure that you call the police at the scene of the accident if you are able. When the police arrive at the scene of drunk driving accidents, they can administer a blood alcohol test which is instrumental.
Steps You Should Take After a DUI Accident
In the carnage that follows a car accident, we know how hard it can be to think straight. The shock can leave you disorientated and without a firm idea of the steps you should take, you may forget to do something important, like securing evidence or calling the police.
We have made a list of steps you should take, in order of importance, if you find yourself the victim or observer of any car accident.
- Never leave the scene – It is crucial that you stay on the scene of an accident if it was caused by a drunk driver. However, you should ensure that you move to a place of safety if you are able to. Move out of the flow of traffic to the side of the road if you are not seriously injured.
- Check for injuries – First, you should check yourself for injuries. If you feel you have a head, neck, or spinal injury, do not move, stay still and wait for help. If your injuries are minor, and you feel safe doing so, check other passengers/pedestrians for injuries.
- Call an ambulance – Even if you do not find any injuries, we still recommend calling for an ambulance. They will be able to check all of the parties involved for injuries that could be hidden. Injuries such as internal bleeding can have no symptoms until later on when they can be fatal. The ambulance team will also file an unbiased report that your attorney can use as evidence in your case.
- Call the police – In the event of an accident, you should always call the police. They will be able to assess the situation, diverting traffic and making the area safe. They will also deal with any aggressive parties and administer a blood alcohol test, which is one of the most important pieces of evidence in any DUI case. The police also file a report that can be used by your attorney.
- Collect evidence – If your injuries allow it, you should attempt to collect as much evidence as possible at the scene. A good way to do this is to take pictures or a video of the scene. You could also draw a quick sketch showing which direction all of the cars/pedestrians were traveling in case your memory becomes unclear later. Good evidence includes license plates, damage to cars, injuries, and the crash scene.
- Witnesses – If there are any witnesses to the accident, you should make sure that you get their information quickly if you are able. Ask them if you can have their email, phone number, name, and address as well as a small statement of what they saw. A good way to do this is to ask if they mind you taking a quick voice recording. This will prevent them from becoming unreliable when your attorney attempts to contact them at a later date.
- Go to the hospital – Even if you feel you have no injuries or you received no medical treatment at the scene of the accident, we highly recommend you head to your preferred hospital or doctor for a check-up following an accident. Internal injuries can be fatal and sometimes have no outward symptoms, a doctor will be able to check for this. This will also show your first documented case of medical attention, which is good for the personal injury attorney’s timeline.
- Hire a DUI accident lawyer – Cases involving personal injuries are time-sensitive, meaning the sooner you get in touch with your attorney, the better. The sooner after the accident you speak to them, the sooner they can send investigators to the scene and to the venue. This helps prevent the chances of receipts, CCTV, and other evidence from disappearing.
Dram Shop Injuries
Being under the influence of alcohol drastically slows your reaction times. This means that drunk drivers will not brake as early as a sober person might in the same situation. This results in a more severe accident, with a higher chance for injury and a much higher impact.
When is a Venue Liable for Overserving Alcohol to an Intoxicated Person in Missouri City, Texas?
The dram shop laws that govern Missouri City and the rest of Texas state that if you serve alcohol, you must refuse service to anyone who is obviously intoxicated.
As a venue, the Texas Dram Shop Act states that you could be held liable if:
- It is obvious that the customer was intoxicated to the point that they could prove a danger to themselves or others.
- The intoxicated individual then went on to inflict the damages suffered.
What Is the Average Settlement for Dram Shop Claims in Missouri City, TX?
There is a huge range of different factors and circumstances that will influence how much a dram shop claim is worth. These include:
- How severe the injuries are.
- How high the medical bills for these injuries are and could be in the future.
- The level of negligence and fault.
- The age of the parties involved.
- How much pain and suffering has been caused.
Many of these factors can be quantified by a physical cost. Medical bills have a set cost to them and the damage to a car will have a clear repair bill for example.
Some costs cannot be quantified like this, these damages are called “pain and suffering damages” and can include things like the loss of enjoyment to life if you are permanently injured or the emotional trauma that might prevent you from feeling safe in a car.
A good personal injury attorney will know exactly how to calculate these costs and will be able to figure out exactly what your pain and suffering is worth. Often they will use a sliding scale multiplier and apply this to your quantifiable costs depending on how severe your pain and suffering is.
They will then use these costs to calculate your overall settlement offer. This will be sent to the other party’s insurance company, who will either accept, reject or send a counter offer.
If they reject the offer or send a counter offer you are not happy with, your attorney will use the case they have built for you to seek compensation via the courts.
Call a Dram Shop Attorney
In order to navigate the complex and tricky DUI and dram shop laws in Texas, your best bet will be to seek the help of a skilled and knowledgable law firm, one that has a team of personal injury attorneys with experience in cases just like yours.
Abraham Watkins, Serving Texas Since 1951!
Serving the state of Texas since 1951, Abraham Watkins has been dealing with personal injury cases for over 70 years. As one of the longest-serving firms in the entire state, we pride ourselves on being a name that you can trust.
Our long list of wins, favorable outcomes, and happy clients speak for themselves, so you can be confident in choosing us as your representation.
In simple cases, we seek quick and fair settlement and in complex cases that go to court, we are known for fighting aggressively for our clients.
Personal injury cases are always time-sensitive affairs, so we recommend you get in touch with us at the first possible instance. The sooner you ask us for help, the sooner we can bring the full force of our experience and resources to your aid.
We can investigate for you, liaise on your behalf, file the paperwork and speak to witnesses, giving you the space and time to focus on your mental, physical and emotional well-being.
Remember, the more time passes between the accident and the point at which you call us for aid, the harder it will be for us to investigate. The sooner you call us, the sooner we can put our vast resources to work on your behalf.
If you or someone you love has been a victim of an accident because a party has been served alcohol irresponsibly, don’t let the drunk driver or the venue that served them, get away with it.
Call Abraham Watkins today and seek the compensation you deserve.
Our phone lines are manned around the clock, call us at 713-535-9319!
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