Liquor Liability/Dram Shop
"I'll Have Another." Maine Liquor Liability
In Maine you only have 180 days to give Notice that you intend to hold a bar, pub or other alcohol server responsible for injuring or killing. Six months is a short time to pull it together when someone you love has been killed or seriously injured by a drunk driver. Often, the family of someone killed by a drunk driver really only focuses on the driver. We think: “The drunk driver chose to get drunk.” True. But the bar and the bartender, folks who have a money motive, also chose. Every time a bartender pours, a choice is made. The difference is, the bartender is sober, and is a trained professional server. And after a point, a drunk is in no condition to make the right judgment about a cut-off. If your loved one was killed by a negligent server of alcohol, the clock is running and you only have 180 days to sort out who was in the wrong.
The words of the Maine Liquor Liability Act are clear: " Every plaintiff seeking damages under this Act must give written notice to all defendants within 180 days of the date of the server's conduct creating liability under this Act. The notice must specify the time, place and circumstances of the server's conduct creating liability under this Act and the time, place and circumstances of any resulting damages. No error or omission in the notice voids the effect of the notice, if otherwise valid, unless the error or omission is substantially material. Failure to give written notice within the time specified is grounds for dismissal of a claim, unless the plaintiff provides written notice within the limits of section 2514 and shows good cause why notice could not have reasonably been filed within the 180-day limit."