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Nowhere to Hide from Drunk Drivers in Long Beach

— May 12, 2022

California does have a Dram Shop law, but it is so restrictive that victims of a DUI accident cannot hold a bar owner accountable.

Long Beach, CA – When they hear about the perils of drunk driving, most people think about dramatic car accidents on the highway and silently pray they’re never involved in such a terrible crash. In Long Beach, however, you’re not safe from drunk drivers even in your home. In early March 2022, a father and his 3-year-old daughter were killed by a drunk driver who crashed his pick-up truck right through the bedroom wall of their Rose Avenue apartment. The man’s wife and their son were also injured in this rare type of drunk driving crash. 

The driver who fled the scene will be eventually captured and sent to jail, but the family will have to live every day with the thought that those who sold the guy alcohol are just across the street, and they won’t be punished in any way. 

What does California’s Dram Shop law say?

California does have a Dram Shop law, but it is so restrictive that victims of a DUI accident cannot hold a bar owner accountable. In California, you can hold a licensed establishment liable for damages only if they knowingly sold alcohol to a person under the age of 21. 

If the drunk driver was an adult, your only chance to hold the bar responsible is if the state files criminal charges. Serving alcohol to a person who is visibly intoxicated is a misdemeanor in California and those responsible may face criminal charges.

However, these cases are extremely complicated and hard to prove so you’ll probably need very good Long Beach DUI accident lawyers to sue a restaurant or a bar. 

How can I recover damages after a drunk driving accident?

California is an at-fault state so your first option is to file a claim against the drunk driver’s insurance.  Even if the driver was blind drunk, their fault is not implied. You will still have to prove that they actually caused the crash by swerving into your lane, rear-ending your car, or skipping a red light. For that, it is recommended that you seek advice from reliable Long Beach accident lawyers.

You will also have to negotiate what kind of damages you are entitled to, and this is another point where you will need a good lawyer.

X-ray of person with broken collarbone; image by Harlie Raethel, via
Image by Harlie Raethel, via

In a personal injury claim, you are entitled to economic damages, like your medical expenses, property damage, or lost wages. You can also seek non-economic damages to compensate you for your pain and suffering. The value of your pain and suffering damages depends on the severity of your injuries and on how much they impacted your life. 

Yet, if you have considerable damages, the other driver’s insurance may not be enough to cover them. In this case, your lawyers will assess the drunk driver’s financial situation and they may advise you to file a lawsuit. 

Attorneys Near Me

If you’re looking for an accident lawyer or need professional help with other legal matters, you may be wondering “Where can I find Attorneys Near Me?” Don’t worry, help is just a few clicks away. Just follow the link to go to the extensive database on Select the legal area you’re interested in, your state and your city, and schedule a free consultation with a trustworthy lawyer in your area. 

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