Liquor Liability Coverage
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Nightclubs are known as a business that serves alcohol to their patrons as a way of ramping up the good times. Any fallout from negative activities that may develop, including fights, traffic accidents, or incidents where alcohol could be determined to be the cause, can be a great concern for a proprietor of one of these establishments.
If you’re in the business of selling, serving or providing alcohol to patrons or guests, everything you’ve worked hard for could be at stake unless you are carrying a policy specific to liquor liability for nightclubs. This should certainly top your list of business insurance purchases and you should also know that this type of liability insurance could be offered as an endorsement to a commercial liability insurance policy, or acquired as a stand-alone policy.
The policy is designed to cover a variety of risks and costs associated with inebriated patrons, or staff, depending on the type of coverage you choose. Assault and battery liability will address anyone injured by another patron or employee and addresses bodily injury or you can also buy employee use liability (substance abuse by workers not only poses a threat to thembut to their colleagues and customers, which can open a company up to liability issues). These policies will help cover legal defense costs as well as any property damage that is a result of alcohol abuse.
Whether an incident occurs on your property or not, if it can be determined that the action was the result of alcohol that was served by your establishment and was directly responsible for any injuries or damage sustained, you can be held liable in a court of law. It is important to monitor the selling of alcoholic beverages, ensuring that the person being served is neither drinking excessively, in which case they can become a danger to others or to themselves, nor are they below legal drinking age.
Alcohol is meant to liven up any social event for those participating that do not abuse it. Unfortunately, it only takes one person permitted to drink to excess to turn a fun occasion into a nightmare, and this could easily end up in litigation. Liquor liability for nightclubs, bars, and restaurants, is the best coverage money can buy.
Any establishment that sells, serves, or assists in the purchase or use of liquor (i.e. dram shop), which includes restaurants, bars, nightclubs, and taverns, is at risk for a liability claim as a consequence of patrons drinking to the extent that injuries or property damages are the result of their actions.
While one may assume that, since the inebriated person was at fault, they should be the one to pay, the reality is that the business that served the alcohol will likely be found liable for any injuries or damages that occurred as a result of the actions, behaviors, or conduct of a patron who drank too much. This is why liquor liability coverage is essential for any one who sells alcohol for consumption.
Common alcohol-fueled scenarios
It can be quite costly when a liability claim is levied upon a restaurant or bar as a result of damages or injuries caused by an intoxicated customer or patron. For example, if an intoxicated patron leaves a bar, gets into his or her car, drives, and commits a vehicular act of manslaughter, an alcohol-related claim is likely to occur. The families of any victims will most likely sue the bar for both civil and criminal damages.
Another common example, a restaurant catering an event serves alcohol, and guests subsequently become involved in a fight, and serious injuries are incurred. This is the type of situation where a business that sells or serves alcohol may be held liable for the actions of those inebriated persons being served. Liquor liability insurance will help cover the owner’s legal costs, court fees, and any civil or criminal damages awarded.
What liquor liability insurance covers
While the terms surrounding this policy vary, some commonalities ensue: Most states in the US require establishments that sell alcohol to carry liability insurance. Policies exclude the selling of alcohol illegally (for example, selling liquor to a minor), and most liquor liability policies are sold as a standalone policy or packaged with a general liability policy.
A good deal of alcohol-related liability claims filed against bars, taverns, and restaurants are a result of liquor-induced fights or altercations, most commonly resulting in an assault and battery allegation. Therefore, assault and battery coverage should be included in your policy. It’s vital that if your establishment serves alcohol, you protect yourself from potential financial losses by being covered with liquor liability coverage.