Dramshop laws were created as an alternate way to compensate victims who suffer injuries or damages at the hands of a drunk driver or otherwise intoxicated person. In many states, not only can a victim of a drunken incident collect from the intoxicated person directly, but may also (in some instances) collect from whoever sold the offender the alcohol and caused them to be intoxicated. Often this kind of liability arises when a bar or restaurant employee serves alchohol to a person who is obviously already intoxicated. However, it may also arise when a person knowingly buys alcohol for a minor, serves alcohol to a minor, or permits a minor to have a party knowing that alcohol will be consumed.

In order to win a lawsuit for dramshop liability, a plaintiff must establish:

1. The intoxicated person was intoxicated at the time of the incident, collision, or assault.
2. The defendant, its agents, or its employees sold or gave intoxicating liquor consumed by the alleged intoxicated individual.
3. The liquor consumed caused the intoxication of the alleged intoxicated individual.
4. The alleged intoxicated individual’s intoxication was at least one cause of the occurrence in question.
5. As a result of the occurrence, the plaintiff suffered injury, property damage, or loss of means of support or society.