While they can be great places to socialize, pubs, bars and nightclubs can also be dangerous. Simply put, the combination of intoxicated guests, dim lighting, high-traffic areas, spilled drinks and wet floors all contribute to increased danger. Injuries from slip and falls, fights, and other occurrences are common.

If you have been injured under such circumstances, you may be able to recover. While an injured victim may be able to recover based on simple negligence principles by showing that the tavern breached a duty to the victim which proximately caused his injury, additional laws are also frequently in play. In Washington, DC, laws have been put in place to protect the general public and patrons who frequent bars and restaurants that serve alcohol. These laws are known as Dram Shop laws. Based on these laws, a tavern owner can be held liable for injuries that flow from serving alcohol in violation of these laws. For example, if a bartender serves too much alcohol to a drunk individual, the tavern may be held liable if that person is himself injured, or if he injures someone else. Additionally, if a bartender serves an underage patron, the tavern again may be held liable. See Jarrett v. Woodward Bros., 751 A.2d 972, 980 (D.C. 2000). Liability can also attach in other circumstances: such as when a patron is injured by an employee acting within the scope of his employment. See Speights v. 800 Water Street, Inc. 4 A.3d 471 (D.C. 2010).

GLG’s lawyers have had great success handling these types of cases. If you were injured in a bar or nightclub, or as a result of a bar or nightclub employee’s negligent conduct, and would like to discuss your rights, call Grenier Law Group at (202) 768-9607 or email sdoerrer@grenierlawgroup.com.