Social Host Liability

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Experienced and Effective Personal Injury Lawyer in New Mexico

The Liability of Social Hosts for Injuries Caused by Intoxicated Guests

New Mexico is one of a number of states that extends liability to third parties in drunk driving accidents under the legal principle of “dram shop” laws. Dram shop laws allow an injured party to seek damages from the person or establishment that served the alcohol to the person causing the accident. Furthermore, New Mexico is one of just a handful of states with the legal concept of “social host” liability—most states only apply the principle to businesses and commercial entities, such as bars, restaurants and liquor stores.

If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident in New Mexico involving an intoxicated driver, let Buchanan Law help determine if you have a right to seek damages against a social host.

At Buchanan Law Firm, LLC we have more than two decades of experience successfully handling a broad range of personal injury claims, including motor vehicle accidents. As a personal injury victim herself, attorney Deena Buchanan knows the effect a personal injury can have on every part of your life. She’s served as defense counsel in personal injury litigation, so she knows how insurance companies prepare their cases. She’s a highly respected trial lawyer who’s handled complex, high-stakes personal injury claims, including wrongful death lawsuits. She’s earned praise from colleagues, clients and judges for her poise and composure in any situation.

We maintain a physical office in Albuquerque and meeting space in Santa Fe, but can meet with you in person throughout the state of New Mexico. Though attorney Buchanan has litigated claims in more than 20 states, we concentrate our personal injury practice in New Mexico. Because of our experience here, we have a comprehensive knowledge of the laws and court systems, as well as how New Mexico’s judges often view personal injury lawsuits.

We take an individualized approach with our clients, learning the unique details of your case, so that we can tailor our counsel to get the results you seek. To schedule a free initial consultation, call us at 505-900-3559 or contact us online to arrange an appointment.

Social Host Liability in New Mexico

Under the provisions of New Mexico’s dram shop laws, a private party host may be liable for injuries caused by a drunken guest to whom alcoholic beverages were served if the beverages were “provided recklessly in disregard for the rights of others.”  It’s a negligence standard, so it does not extend liability to any guest who consumed alcohol at the party. The social host’s actions in serving the guest who caused the accident must be considered to be “unreasonable” and “reckless.” As a practical matter, that typically happens when a host serves someone who is visibly intoxicated, or serves a large quantity that would reasonably lead a person to be impaired.

If you have been injured by a drunken party guest, we will conduct a thorough investigation to determine the extent to which the social host had liability. We’ll gather, evaluate and preserve all evidence; prepare and file all necessary documentation; and be your advocate in all hearings or proceedings.

We’ll help you pursue damages for all your losses, including wages and income, loss of enjoyment of life, unreimbursed medical expenses, loss of companionship or consortium, and physical pain and suffering. We handle all types of injury claims, from soft-tissue trauma to serious and catastrophic loss, such as traumatic brain injury, spinal cord trauma, broken bones, burns, paralysis, permanent scarring and disfigurement, and amputation or loss of limb. We also litigate wrongful death claims.

Results-Oriented New Mexico Personal Injury Lawyer

Protect your rights when you have been hurt in a motor vehicle accident caused by a drunken party guest. To set up a free initial consultation, contact our offices online or call us at 505-900-3559. Evening and weekend meetings can be arranged upon request.

We handle all social host liability claims on a contingent fee basis. We won’t take any attorney fees unless we recover compensation for your losses.

Call us today to schedule a free consultation with my team. We fight for our clients throughout New Mexico from our Albuquerque office.

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