If you are involved in the bar, restaurant, nightclub or event business, you might want to sit down before you read this blog post. We frequently get involved in cases working for people who have been injured in bars, or nightclubs, or at special events. The injuries arise from a variety of situations ranging from falls, incidents with glasses or bottles, fights between patrons, fights with bouncers, shootings, and injuries caused by drunk drivers. Unfortunately, these kinds of things sometimes happen when alcohol is involved, and most (but definitely not all) bar or nightclub owners or event producers do the responsible thing and go out and secure commercial liability insurance. Most bar or club owners assume that commercial liability coverage is standard from one industry to the next, and also assume that their agent will assist in securing them insurance that will cover most anything bad that might happen in connection with their business. It is usually not until shortly after reporting a claim that many bar and club owners realize that many — and maybe most — modern bar, nightclub, or special event commercial liability insurance policies are chock full of exceptions and exclusions. For example, many companies attempt to exclude coverage to bars and nightclubs for incidents arising out of alcohol use. How many incidents that happen in a bar that lead to a personal injury claim do you think do not arise out of alcohol use? Business owners are often shocked to learn that they have been paying for insurance that is essentially worth nothing to them. Likewise, many nightclub operators are stunned to realize that their assets are now at risk from a negligence lawsuit because insurance won’t cover a claim. Savvy business owners will stay involved in the insurance procurement process. They will ask lots of questions — particularly about coverage exclusions. A wise bar or club owner would probably insist that alcohol-related incidents, and assaults and battery claims be covered — since these are the most frequent claims that we see in our offices as personal injury lawyers. Nobody injured by negligence in a restaurant, bar, nightclub, or at a special event, wants the business owner to be harmed, but they do expect to be compensated for their damages. If you have any questions regarding liability insurance coverage for a bar, nightclub, or restaurant, or if you have been injured in one, call Winter Park personal injury attorneys Kim Cullen and Robert Hemphill at...Read More »
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