People go to bars and restaurants to have a good time with family or friends. Unfortunately, accidents and injuries sometimes happen, and the bar or restaurant should be held responsible.
We might not think of bars and restaurants as dangerous places, but the possibility of being injured exists. You might suffer food poisoning from tainted food in a bar or restaurant. You might instead be injured by a hazard on the premises, like broken glass or unsafe floors and walkways. A violent patron might injure you that negligent security failed to stop. You should discuss how you were injured in a bar or restaurant because that will determine what kind of lawsuit you should file. You might file a general personal injury case or something more specific. In most cases, you must prove the restaurant or bar was somehow negligent, although exactly what you must prove will vary from case to case.
A night out to a restaurant or bar should not end in injuries. When this happens, our New Jersey personal injury lawyers can help you hold the establishment liable. For a free case review, call Legal Care New Jersey at (732) 838-9769.
Causes of Injuries in Bars or Restaurants in New Jersey
Food served by restaurants and bars must be safe to eat. When food is spoiled or tainted, patrons may get severely ill. Food poisoning can be extremely serious, and there are serious risks like severe dehydration from being unable to keep liquids down. You might also experience other symptoms if the food was tainted with some sort of toxin.
In rowdy bars or clubs, violent patrons are a possible cause of injuries. Bars often employ security guards and bouncers to protect patrons. When people have too much to drink, they might get overly rowdy or even violent, and security guards are meant to prevent things from getting out of hand. If security was negligent and you got hurt because another patron became violent, you can sue the bar for your injuries.
Hazards or unsafe conditions on the property might also cause severe injuries. Restaurants and bars are prone to wet floors from spilled drinks, and if spills are not cleaned up quickly, unsuspecting patrons might slip and fall and be seriously hurt. Perhaps you tripped on uneven stairs, becoming injured. The bar would be responsible for not fixing the stairs for the safety of its patrons.
More general accidents might also happen in restaurants or bars. For example, a server might accidentally bump into you and knock you down the stairs. Perhaps hot food or liquid was spilled into your lap, scalding you. Even if these were accidents, the restaurant should be held accountable for injuring its patrons. Our Jersey City personal injury attorneys can help you figure out how to approach your lawsuit based on how you were injured.
What Kind of Lawsuit Should I File Against a New Jersey Bar or Restaurant?
Not all lawsuits are the same, and how you were injured in a bar or restaurant determines what kind of lawsuit our Newark personal injury attorneys can help you file. It is important to go over every detail with our team as it might not be clear at first what kind of case you have. Knowing how you were injured also helps us collect the necessary evidence to support your claims of negligence.
A premises liability lawsuit might be appropriate if you were hurt because of unsafe conditions on the property of the restaurant or bar. Unsafe conditions might involve fixtures in the establishment, like stairs, plumbing, or even electrical wiring. It might instead involve things like spills or broken glassware.
People are often injured by these hazards when the restaurant fails to clean them up or provide warning to patrons. If the restaurant did not clean up a spill or place a wet floor sign to warn patrons, the restaurant would be liable for a slip and fall accident.
The restaurant or bar has a duty to repair or remove known hazards. Any unsafe conditions the restaurant owner or managers know about must be cleaned up or fixed. At the very least, warning signs should be posted, or unsafe areas roped off. There is also a duty to make reasonable inspections for unknown hazards.
The bar or restaurant owner must make regular inspections for possible hazards, but these inspections need only be reasonable. What is considered reasonable depends on the location and condition of the premises. For example, inspections in a bar in a very old building might look different than in a brand new building.
If you were injured because security measures in the bar or restaurant failed, you might be able to sue for negligent security. When a bar, restaurant, or other establishment knows there is a risk of violence or injury, they have a duty to employ adequate security measures. If they fail to do so, our Paterson personal injury attorneys can help you file a lawsuit for your injuries.
Factors considered when determining adequate security measures include the neighborhood or location of the bar or restaurant. If the location is known to be a dangerous neighborhood where people are frequently victimized, security cameras and security guards or bouncers might be necessary.
Bars with reputations for being very rowdy or being the site of bar fights or brawls should have bouncers and security guards to break things up. The bar might be negligent and liable for your injuries if no such security measures are taken.
Other kinds of accidents might fall under a more general category of personal injury law. For example, food poisoning, being accidentally knocked down a flight of stairs by a staff member, or having hot food or liquid spilled on you might be a general personal injury case. Even so, our Lakewood personal injury attorneys can help prove the restaurant or bar is liable for your injuries.
To be successful, we have to show that the restaurant or bar owed you a duty of safety. Serving safe food and being careful with hot dishes is a part of this duty. We next have to show that the restaurant somehow violated or breached this duty. This would be the action or failure to act that led to your injuries. Not only that, but the breach must be the direct and proximate cause of your injuries. Finally, your injuries must be real, and not just possibilities had things been worse.
Dram Shop Liability
Laws around alcohol and how it is served are very strict. If a bar or restaurant overserves a patron, and that patron causes an accident or injures someone, the bar or restaurant might be liable under dram shop laws.
According to N.J.S.A. § 2A-22A-5, a person injured because of the negligent service of alcohol may recover damages from the server of the beverage (e.g., a restaurant or bar) if the server is deemed negligent, the injuries were proximately caused by the negligent service of alcohol, and the injuries were a foreseeable consequence of the negligent service.
A bar or restaurant may be deemed negligent if they serve alcohol to a minor or visibly intoxicated person. The server must know or reasonably should know that the person being served is a minor.
Contact Our New Jersey Personal Injury Attorney for Help
If you were injured while having a nice dinner or enjoying drinks with friends, the bar or restaurant should be made to cover the costs of your injuries. Our Elizabeth personal injury attorneys can help you get compensation for your damages. Call Legal Care New Jersey for a free case assessment at (732) 838-9769.