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Injured in a Michigan drunk driving accident? Michigan's dram shop act may be able to help. This law may allow you to file suit against the bar, restaurant, nightclub or liquor store that provided the drunk driver with alcohol. This dram shop lawsuit comes in addition to any claim for compensation you may have against the drunk driver who caused the crash in the first place.
Michigan Dram Shop Lawsuits
Every dram shop lawsuit must be based on a violation of Michigan's dram shop law. Alcohol vendors can be held accountable for drunk driving accidents or bar fights, but only if they broke the law in a way that contributed to the accident. In this context, Michigan State law outlines two potential violations:
- serving alcohol to a minor (someone under the age of 21)
- serving alcohol to someone who is already visibly intoxicated
Either of these 2 violations can serve as the foundation for a dram shop lawsuit, in the event that the intoxicated patron went on to cause severe injuries in an alcohol-related accident.
No Social Host Liability
Unfortunately, Michigan's dram shop liability does not extend to cover social hosts, people who provide alcohol or serve it at private parties. Social hosts cannot be held accountable for the drunken actions of their guests, no matter how much the guest was allowed to drink.
3-Year Statute Of Limitations
Like every other form of lawsuit in Michigan, dram shop claims are governed by a strict statute of limitations. This law serves like a legal time limit; if you file your case after the statute has run its course, your lawsuit will be dismissed. The statute of limitations for dram shop claims in Michigan is currently 3 years, beginning on the date of the accident.