Most Common Types of Claims Seen in Bars and Taverns

Cochrane_Bars and Taverns

Bars and taverns come with a risk, especially if a patron suffers an injury and files a claim for his damages. Owning a bar can be a risky business, as liquor consumption can lead to unexpected behaviors from patrons and result in injury or property damage.

Bars and Taverns

Bars and taverns have some other caveats to worry about. There are also compliance concerns with the minimum drinking age and licensing requirements. Whether it’s encouraging an owner to secure cyber insurance to protect against digital threats or adding equipment breakdown coverage, there is a lot that a bar or tavern owner needs to know about risk.

Know the Risks

Serving alcohol is fraught with risks, despite an owner’s best attempts to create a legal, safe environment. Higher risks are more likely to lead to bar and tavern claims. The property itself presents concerns, as do the actions or inactions of employees and patrons. There is no way to prevent a claim from being filed against a bar or tavern, but being proactive in addressing the most common areas of liability can help an owner better estimate how much coverage is needed.

Common Claims Amongst Bars

Though a claim could arise from any negative incident, bars and taverns generally experience claims in a few categories. These include injury claims, liquor liability claims, and worker’s compensation.

Injury Claims

An establishment doesn’t have to be physically at fault for an injury claim to come from a patron. A crowded environment could lead to bumping or shoving, causing an individual to trip and fall. A group of patrons may become intoxicated and get into an altercation that injures an innocent bystander. These incidents could result in minor or severe injuries, but the establishment could be liable for medical expenses. Additionally, they would have to compensate for pain, suffering, and other damage awards.

Failing to take care of the property properly can lead to injury claims under negligence or breach of duty. The patrons have a reasonable expectation to avoid harm and remain safe, but undercooked food, burns, or hazardous conditions can lead to injuries.

Liquor Liability

A bar or tavern must obey the legal drinking age and responsible drinking laws. If caught serving an underage individual or overserving an individual, the legal consequences are steep. The behaviors of the intoxicated individual are a liability to the establishment owner. Likewise, the owner’s liquor liability coverage would pay for the claims.

Worker’s Compensation

Patrons aren’t the only ones a bar owner should be worried about. Employees also have the potential to get hurt on the job. It occurs either because of the patrons’ activities or the hazards of the job. Common accidents in taverns include slips, sprains, burns, cuts, falls, and punctures.

Protecting a bar or tavern’s financial interests is the job is comprehensive insurance coverage. In addition to recommending a standard liability policy, encourage worker’s comp, cyber insurance, and liquor liability to minimize the effects of claims in these areas.

About Cochrane & Company

For more than six decades, Cochrane & Company has been proudly at the forefront of the insurance industry. Our experience has enabled us to innovate in powerful ways, reimagining the E&S market, and providing technology solutions that make it easy to do business with us. Licensed in all 50 states, we proudly serve clients across the nation, providing personalized and powerful solutions to help you become an even better partner for your clients. Speak to one of our experienced professionals today by calling (855) 967-0069.


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