Preventing Liquor Liability Risks in Your Establishment
January 12, 2022

Preventing Liquor Liability Risks in Your Establishment

Alcohol service in dining establishments often come with tight regulations. If you own such a business, whenever you serve alcohol, consumers may become drunk. Drunk individuals, as they lose total control of their faculties, may cause harm to others. Should a drunk customer harm another individual, the business that served them could be responsible for the damage. 

In such cases, a liquor liability insurance policy may help the business. These policies can protect liquor-serving establishments should their service cause harm to others. 
bar owner standing at counter with a tablet
Understanding Why Liquor Liability Insurance is Beneficial 
Let’s say that you own a bar, and serve alcohol to a patron until that person becomes intoxicated. That person may then leave the establishment and assault someone else on the street. This may result in injuries, property damage or other losses. The harmed parties may sue the bar because the bar served the person until their intoxication became out of control. 

In certain areas, the law can hold alcohol-serving establishments responsible for damages caused by drunken patrons. Because an establishment served the person, it may have contributed to the delinquency. 

In such a scenario, the bar might be able to use its liquor liability coverage to protect its own assets. They might use the policy funds to pay for legal costs or pay damages to the harmed parties. 

Reducing Liquor Liability Risks in Your Establishment 
Certain states make it illegal to serve alcohol to already- intoxicated people. Bars might have a legal requirement to stop service to any intoxicated patrons. This may help reduce risks to the restaurant and its patrons. 

With the right care, alcohol-service establishments can help reduce liquor liability risks. 

  • Never sell liquor illegally. If you do so, your liquor liability policy may exclude coverage. Illegal sales may include selling alcohol to minors or selling without proper licensing. 

  • Always verify age requirements with all bar patrons. Enforce ID laws. Post warnings around your establishment that state your refusal to serve anyone under 21 years old. 

  • Make sure you meet all requirements for liquor licensing. 

  • Require bartenders or alcohol servers to have proper training and qualifications to serve. 

  • Learn to recognize the signs of intoxication. These may include slurred speech, drowsiness, bloodshot eyes or belligerent behavior. 

  • Make sure you and your staff have the training to refuse alcohol service. You can often learn proper ways to refuse service and de-escalate situations.


It is impossible to eliminate liability risks in your liquor-service establishment. However, with the right insurance, you can have protection in case an unfortunate accident occurs. 

Do you need liquor liability insurance? Call Guardian Insurance at 855-554-6482 for a fast, accurate policy quote. We can help you get top-notch coverage! 

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