If a New York business owner or private resident sells or provides alcohol to another party or parties, there may be legal repercussions if an accident later occurs. For instance, a person may patronize a local pub, spend several hours drinking, then get behind the wheel of a car to drive and ultimately cause a collision that results in the injury or death of another person. Sadly, DUI crashes cost thousands of lives every year.
Someone who sells alcohol or hosts a gathering that makes alcohol available to others may be criminally charged if a customer or partygoer winds up causing an accident that injures or kills someone. Such matters are governed under dram shop regulations. Prosecutors must be able to prove that an alcohol vendor was at fault and legally responsible for an accident caused by another party.
New York dram shop laws prohibit an alcohol vendor from serving alcohol to someone who is visibly intoxicated. The term, “visibly intoxicated,” is rather vague, as there are various health conditions and other issues that may make a person appear drunk even if he or she has not consumed alcohol. Then again, one alcohol vendor may interpret certain behavior as visible intoxication while another may see the same situation in a different light.
New York is among more than 40 other states that currently have dram shop laws in effect. Such laws vary by state; in fact, even the definitions of terms, such as guest or patron may differ between states. Any person facing legal problems regarding DUI and/or dram shop laws in this state may reach out for criminal defense assistance.
Source: FindLaw, “New York DWI Laws“, Accessed on May 30, 2018