Liquor Liability 101
If you own a business that sells or distributes alcohol then a Liquor Liability policy is a must. That being said, many owners forgo the cost of purchasing Liquor Liability in the hope that it “won’t happen to me.” But the real fact is one lawsuit from the result of liquor liability claim without the proper insurance will bankrupt a business.
What is a Florida Dram Shop?
A dram shop is a legal term that refers to a bar, tavern, or a place the sells or distributes alcoholic beverages.
Florida has a modified Dram Shop Law which provides that a person who sells or furnishes alcoholic beverages to a person of lawful drinking age (21) can’t be held liable for injury or damage caused by or resulting from the intoxication of such person, unless the person selling or providing the alcoholic beverage sells the beverage to a minor (under 21), or to someone who is known to be habitually addicted to the use of any or all alcoholic beverages. In such cases the person selling or providing the beverage may incur civil liability.
Here is just a few headlines from the news concerning Liquor Liability Lawsuits
In 2008 the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal reform released “Tort Liability Costs for Small Business.” It small business tort liability cost more than $105 billion in 2008. A further study done by Tower Watson, actuarial firm, released “2011 Update on Tort Cost Trends.” They found in 2010 the total cost of all torts in the United State was $264.6 billion.
“$10.5M Awarded Over Monster-Truck Death”
“Judge puts $1M settlement from DRAM Shop suit into court registry”
“Eddie’s Place Lawsuit awards Matthew Eastridge $1.7M after DUI Crash”
“$4.3 Million settlement of a Liquor Liability Lawsuit”
What does Liquor Liability Cover?
- Assault and Battery – This coverage will protects your business from bodily injury and medical costs if a patron has an altercation with another patron or employee
- Defense Costs – The biggest cost of an liquor liability claim is the defense costs. Insurance carriers will deduct the cost of legal fees from the total coverage limits. That means if you have a claim and policy limits are $500,000, but the legal costs associated with the claim is $100,000, then the amount left of $400,000 would be used to settle the claim.
How To Help Prevent Your Business
- Education and training of all employees on the effects of alcohol and how they can become liable in the event of an accident. A great resource to educate your staff is TIPS (Training for Intervention Procedures)
- Create a written policy and procedure manual
- Have regular staff meetings
- Don’t allow your staff to drink on the job
- Use regulated pourers
- Check everyone for a valid ID
- Have a system to track the number of drinks each patron has had
- Don’t serve alcohol to someone showing signs of intoxication
- Discourage complimentary drinks
- Consult an attorney for state legal statute
- Establish controls to prevent serving minors
- Use surveillance cameras
Getting a Risk Free Liquor Liability Insurance Quote Is Easy
Because liquor liability insurance varies greatly according to the type establishment and spirits being served. In most cases, as side-by-side comparison of coverage is nearly impossible.
Fortunately, a Barbee Jackson Insurance agent can help you by comparing options, limits, and deductibles. Our experts take the time to get to know your business and the way you use your trucks in order to help you save both time and money. All you have to do is click on the quote request button now and your agent will contact you with a no obligation quote for liquor liability insurance that meets your exact needs.
Do not make the mistake of thinking you have the best coverage available. Allow Barbee Jackson Insurance a chance to show you just how affordable the comprehensive coverage that you deserve can actually be. Get started now before it is too late.