Serving Alcohol to Minors
In Pennsylvania and many other states across the country, liquor laws rightfully impose liability on establishments that serve or sell alcohol to minors. Serving or selling alcohol to minors who are under the legal drinking age of 21 can result in fines, suspension or loss of liquor licenses, criminal penalties, or even jail time. Pennsylvania Dram Shop laws hold that if a minor was served alcohol then later injures himself or someone else, the establishment that served the minor alcohol may be held responsible for the injuries and damages. Bars, restaurants, and other business establishments that serve alcohol are obligated to train their employees in alcohol awareness and safety courses, and to comply with Pennsylvania state liquor laws. The Dram Shop lawyers
at Reiff & Bily are strong advocates against alcohol related injuries and wrongful deaths, and understand the loss of hopes and dreams suffered by victims and their families due to the irresponsible and negligent actions of others who serve alcohol to minors and who also serve alcohol to customers, consumers, and others who they know or should know to reveal signs of intoxication. Underage drinking can have devastating consequences to teens, their families, and those who may be seriously injured by an inebriated teen’s actions. The Center for Disease Control discovered that high school students who consume alcohol are more likely to have problems in school, social problems, and changes in brain development, and to engage in risky sexual behavior. Further, underage drinkers are more likely to binge drink (consume more than 5 drinks in a short amount of time), and are more likely drive after consuming alcohol. An estimated 5,000 teens die every year from alcohol-related causes like car accidents and alcohol poisoning. Examples of serious and often life-altering injuries resulting from alcohol related accidents include broken bones, fractures, head injuries, brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, paraplegia, quadriplegia, seizures, permanent brain damage, and death. If an adult, parent, bar, or restaurant served a minor alcohol, our lawyers will aggressively fight to hold them accountable if you or your minor child were catastrophically injured or wrongfully killed. There is a growing trend of parents allowing or even serving their underage children alcohol in their home, believing it is a safer environment and thinking their kids will find a way to drink anyway. In Pennsylvania and most states, it is illegal for parents to serve or provide alcohol to anyone under the age of 21, even their own children. If a parent serves alcohol to a minor, and the minor subsequently injures himself or someone else, the parent may be held responsible for the injuries, just like a bar or restaurant would be responsible under Pennsylvania Dram Shop laws. A parent or adult doesn’t even need to physically serve or hand a drink to someone under 21 to be responsible for his or a third party’s injuries
. If a parent or adult has knowledge that alcohol is present, and does not stop minor from drinking, the parent or adult may be held liable for injuries caused by the minor.
Attorneys to Help Hold Negligent Restaurant and Bar Owners and Bartenders Responsible
People who irresponsibly serve alcohol to people under the legal drinking age must be held responsible for injuries and fatalities they contribute to. If you or a loved one has been catastrophically injured or wrongfully killed as a result of a drunk-driving accident, or because a minor was illegally served alcohol, we may be able to help you receive financial compensation for your injuries. The experienced alcohol intoxications and Dram Shop lawyers at Reiff & Bily have a proven track record of litigating and successfully representing clients involved in personal injury and premises liability cases. Recently, our firm obtained a large settlement for the family of a boy who was tragically killed on a railroad track after his friend’s parents allowed the underage boys to drink beer in their home before going out for the night. We are committed to representing the rights of those catastrophically injured or killed by careless drunk drivers and reckless bar owners and adults who should understand that safety always takes precedence over profitability. The personal injury attorneys at Reiff & Bily believe in sending a message in the courtroom mandating the greater need for safety and for more responsible alcohol use. Don’t hesitate to contact one of our skilled and experienced dram shop attorneys for a free consultation.