Dram Shop And Liquor Liability

This specialty area of law has changed in a rather dramatic fashion since the Michigan Supreme Court opinion in Reed v. Brenton, 475 Mich. 531 (2006). In Reed, the Court embraced the rebuttable presumption of non-liability as well as the adequacy of proofs required to show the driver’s alleged visible intoxication under the law (clear and convincing evidence is required). That said, there are pitfalls for the inexperienced practitioner. Finding an attorney with a great deal of experience in Dram Shop litigation is rare given the limited number of cases filed each year. We offer extensive experience in this area of the law. We have represented Dram Shop defendant’s throughout southeastern Michigan in cases involving a wide range of legal issues, from multiple deaths to gunshot wounds. We are often consulted pre-suit to gather and preserve evidence essential to the successful defense of a Dram Shop claim.

Examples of the Dram Shop claims we have handled include:

  • The allegedly intoxicated person (AIP) shot the plaintiff after an altercation in a bar. The issue in the case was whether the AIP was served prior to the shooting.
  • The AIP and plaintiff were both ejected from a vehicle at a high rate of speed killing both occupants. The issue in the case was whether plaintiff or the passenger was driving the vehicle at the time of the crash.
  • The plaintiff failed to provide notice of the claim as required by MCLA 436.1801(4).
  • The plaintiff failed to include necessary parties as required by the Court Rules.
  • The plaintiff’s claimed injuries were not proximately caused by the alleged violation of the Dram Shop act.

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