Bars and Taverns (and other similar establishments) are required to keep their premises reasonably safe. If the premises are found to be hazardous, resulting in injury to a patron, they can be held liable for damages. Such potential liability extends to the condition of the premises (poor lighting, improper stairs, tripping hazards, and building code violations) as well as the activities in the premises, including the actions of other patrons and staff.
Taverns, pubs, bars and other establishments (including restaurants) that serve alcohol have a duty to not over-serve patrons and to protect those individuals and others who have to interact with any impaired patrons.
Our highest Courts have held that a duty of care exists between alcohol-serving establishments and their patrons who are unable to look after themselves after becoming intoxicated. The duty extends to requiring positive steps be taken by the staff of such establishments to prevent an intoxicated patron from driving where it is apparent
An impaired driver can cause serious injuries to others on our highways. If a bar or tavern over-serve’s a patron, or fails to take appropriate steps to prevent the impaired patron from getting behind the wheel of a motor vehicle, it can be held legally responsible for any injuries or deaths that result when that patron causes a collision.
Assaults to Impaired Patrons
If an establishment has improperly trained and incompetent staff or security personnel and you are assaulted by another intoxicated patron as a result, the tavern or bar owner/operator can be held liable. The owners of such establishments have a legal duty to ensure their staff is properly trained in identifying impaired patrons and following appropriate procedures to ensure someone is not over-served. They must be able to control and eject such persons in appropriate circumstances. Failure to do so can result in altercations and assaults.
Excessive Force Used By Bouncers
As a customer of a bar, pub or tavern, you have the right to expect proper treatment by bar staff. Injuries can sometimes occur when over-zealous bouncers or security staff uses excessive force to control you or remove you from the premises. If you have been injured by a bouncer, security or other staff member of a bar, pub or tavern, you may have the right to compensation.
In such cases, immediate and detailed investigation is crucial to successfully claim against a bar or tavern. Witness statements, preservation of video surveillance, toxicology experts and accident reconstruction experts may be required. It is also crucial to obtain any records of the bar or tavern (in respect to sales receipts, staffing, and training) to ensure that evidence is preserved.
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