Dram shop liability laws make bars, clubs, restaurants and other alcoholic beverage vendors responsible for the injuries and property damage that drunk patrons cause others.
In North Carolina, sellers are always liable for the harm intoxicated minors cause during a car crash or another accident.
That means an establishment in downtown Greensboro is likely liable for serving alcohol to Ian Michael Smith—a minor—on the night of March 24th and early morning of March 25th, 2011. A still unidentified bar’s negligence contributed to the deaths of Marcial Aragon Colmillo and Juan Carlos Cortes, and that vendor should be made to pay for such a tragic loss of life. The vendor can also be held liable for the injuries and expenses incurred to survivors of the accident: Octavio Landin Acosta and Amanda Leigh Tompkins.
According to dram shop liability statute in North Carolina, people injured or killed by underage drunk drivers are entitled to up to $500,000 in relief. Most commercial vendors of alcohol carry at least 1 million dollars in liability insurance, so a judgement in favor of the victims could, hypothetically be easily collected.