2005 Connecticut Code - Sec. 30-102. Dram Shop Act; liquor seller liable for damage by intoxicated person. No negligence cause of action for sale to person twenty-one years of age or older.
Sec. 30-102. Dram Shop Act; liquor seller liable for damage by intoxicated
person. No negligence cause of action for sale to person twenty-one years of age or
older. If any person, by such person or such person's agent, sells any alcoholic liquor
to an intoxicated person, and such purchaser, in consequence of such intoxication, thereafter injures the person or property of another, such seller shall pay just damages to the
person injured, up to the amount of two hundred fifty thousand dollars, or to persons
injured in consequence of such intoxication up to an aggregate amount of two hundred
fifty thousand dollars, to be recovered in an action under this section, provided the
aggrieved person or persons shall give written notice to such seller within sixty days of
the occurrence of such injury to person or property of such person's or persons' intention
to bring an action under this section. In computing such sixty-day period, the time between the death or incapacity of any aggrieved person and the appointment of an executor, administrator, conservator or guardian of such person's estate shall be excluded,
except that the time so excluded shall not exceed one hundred twenty days. Such notice
shall specify the time, the date and the person to whom such sale was made, the name
and address of the person injured or whose property was damaged, and the time, date
and place where the injury to person or property occurred. No action under the provisions
of this section shall be brought but within one year from the date of the act or omission
complained of. Such injured person shall have no cause of action against such seller for
negligence in the sale of alcoholic liquor to a person twenty-one years of age or older.
History: 1959 act limited recovery to twenty-five thousand dollars and extended the notice period from sixty to ninety days; 1961 act reduced recoverable amount to twenty thousand dollars and notice period to sixty days and placed fifty thousand dollar limitation on aggregate amount recoverable; P.A. 74-144 specified factors to be considered in computing sixty-day period; P.A. 86-338 added Subsec. (b) establishing a rebuttable presumption that the last seller is solely liable; P.A. 87-227 deleted provision added in 1986 which established a rebuttable presumption that the last seller is solely liable; P.A. 03-91 made technical changes for the purpose of gender neutrality, raised damages limits to two hundred fifty thousand dollars for injured person or persons and prohibited negligence action against seller for sale of alcoholic liquor to person twenty-one years of age or older, effective June 3, 2003.
Prior to 1957 amendment statute governed by a three-year statute of limitations. 142 C. 452. It is not necessary to prove a causal connection between the sale of the intoxicating liquor and the injury. The delict defined is not the sale of liquor to create the condition of intoxication but sale to one already intoxicated. 143 C. 53. The word "sell" is used in the sense of purvey or furnish. The dispensing of food in a restaurant for consumption on the premises does not constitute a sale but rather a service. A permit to sell liquor is a matter of privilege and not of right. By engaging in the liquor business the permittee assumes the risk of a variety of situations which could impose liability on him. It is not an unconstitutional exercise of the police power for a permittee who sells in violation of the law to be prevented from defending on the ground that the particular drink which he sold did not cause or contribute to the buyer's intoxication. The furnishing of intoxicants for a price to a group of two or more in one company may be considered a sale to each member of that group. 144 C. 241. 1959 Act limiting recovery to $25,000 held substantive in nature and not applicable to pending action. 149 C. 402. Requirement of written notice to seller does not require plaintiff to give a "signed" written notice. Id., 405. Dram shop act modifies common law rule that the proximate cause of intoxication is consumption of liquor, not furnishing of it, and is restricted to its terms. 154 C. 432. History of section. Id. As a matter of law, negligent act of seller or donor of intoxicating beverages is not a substantial factor in recipient's injury of third party. 170 C. 356, 359. Cited. Id., 356, 359, 361, 366. Cited. 176 C. 676, 678. Cited. 180 C. 252, 258. There is no common law right of action in negligence against one who furnishes intoxicating liquor to another who becomes intoxicated and causes injury; however, an individual may be liable for the injurious consequences of wanton and reckless conduct in furnishing alcoholic beverages to another. 181 C. 355- 358. Cited. 187 C. 147, 150. Cited. 196 C. 341-346, 348, 352-355. Cited. 201 C. 385, 389. Payments under this section not encompassed by set off provisions of Sec. 38-175c(b)(1). 205 C. 178, 179, 198. Cited. 207 C. 88, 91. Cited. 211 C. 67, 69. Neither common law negligence action nor a public nuisance action exist against commercial vendor selling intoxicating liquor to an adult who because of his intoxication thereafter injures another. 213 C. 343, 344, 347, 348. P.A. 86-338 cited. 214 C. 1, 6, 7. Cited. 223 C. 22, 29. Section creates cause of action; does not require insurance coverage. Id., 31, 33, 38, 40. Connecticut dram shop act cited. Id. Cited. 233 C. 174, 184. Cited. 236 C. 670, 672, 676. Dram Shop Act does not occupy the field so as to preclude a common-law action in negligence against purveyor of alcoholic beverages for service of alcoholic liquor to an adult patron who, as a result of intoxication, injures another. 262 C. 312.
Cited. 6 CA 491. Cited. 11 CA 122, 127. Cited. Id., 420. Cited. 15 CA 392, 394, 399. Cited. 16 CA 497-499, 511. Cited. 22 CA 384-387, 390, 391. Dram shop act cited. Id. Cited. 26 CA 509-512, 515, 516. Cited. 31 CA 757, 759. Cited. 34 CA 655-657, 662, 664-666. Sixty-day notice requirement is a condition precedent to maintaining an action that alleges only a violation of Dram Shop Act. 53 CA 282. Bar and restaurant owners may be liable for harm caused by employees consuming liquor on the job. 82 CA 186.
Under former section, one-year limitation period under statute enumerating classes of torts did not apply. 18 CS 224. Corporation is liable as seller. Id., 271. History of section reviewed. Id. Statute is compensatory as well as criminal; public policy not against a liquor seller insuring against his liability. 19 CS 222. Permittee not liable under statute for injuries to the intoxicated person himself. Id., 311. Conn. will enforce provisions of the N.Y. Dram Shop Act where injury occurred in this state. 20 CS 165. Court could not enlarge upon the cause of action created by the legislature. Id., 183. By "just damages" is meant compensatory, rather than exemplary or punitive, damages. 22 CS 297. Notice provision is mandatory and not excused by death of person injured. 23 CS 104. Statute does not specify no action shall be maintained unless requirement of notice is met, only limitation being that action be brought within one year from date of act or omission complained of. 23 CS 146. Dram Shop Act does not give remedy to one who joins and participates in and contributes to its violation. 23 CS 193. The sixty-day notice is a condition precedent to bringing of action. 25 CS 1. Notice which contained no information relative to the names of the persons to whom the sale was made, held invalid. 31 CS 405. Contributory negligence and assumption of risk not defenses to dram shop action; participation defense discussed. 35 CS 91, 92. "Participation" and "assumption of risk" are not applicable defenses. 39 CS 20, 21, 26. Sufficiency of notice discussed. 40 CS 48, 49. Cited. Id., 331, 332.
Constitutionality of this act no longer an open question. 4 Conn. Cir. Ct. 89.
Cited. 16 CA 497, 498, 513.
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