Each restaurant and hotel in California is warned repeatedly by the Alcoholic Beverage Control Division (nevertheless known by several as the ABC Board) in California, by food and wine attorneys, and by hotel and restaurant lawyers how risky it is to their reputation, income and liability to serve alcohol or liquor to a minor. The understanding of this danger has lately been enforced within the minds of hotel and restaurant owners in the Coachella Valley cities of Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, La Quinta, Indio, Coachella and Cathedral City.
However the lesson learned within the Coachella Valley holds true also for restaurants and hotels in Long Beach, San Diego, Orange County, Santa Ana, Anaheim, Irvine, Huntington Beach, orange, Costa Mesa, Carlsbad, Santa Monica, Newport Beach, Buena Park, the Inland Empire location of Rancho Cucamonga, Riverside, and Temecula and up the coast to Ventura, Oxnard, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo also.
In August two restaurants within the Coachella Valley, a single in rancho mirage exterminator and another in La Quinta had their liquor licenses suspended for 30 days just after serving alcoholic beverages to minors. Each restaurants chose to shut down and make use of the time for remodeling.
It’s poor enough if the Alcohol and Beverage Handle Board catches a restaurant serving alcohol to a minor, but what is unusual in these two cases is how the restaurants had been caught and sad what occurred for the minors.
Inside the case from the Rancho Mirage restaurant, the minor died within a automobile accident. Inside the La Quinta incident, the minor jumped to his death from a pickup truck.
It gets even worse. In the exterminator rancho mirage restaurant case, the minor was riding inside a auto having a friend who had also been drinking but who was not a minor. Each died when their car hit a curb and rolled over. Both had been drinking at the restaurant. The older on the two had a blood alcohol reading of 0.23. The minor had a blood alcohol reading of 0.12. The legal limit in California is 0.08.
Inside the La Quinta restaurant incident, the 19 year-old minor had dinner with his girlfriend, using the twenty-two year-old male driver from the car, the driver’s wife and their two year-old child.
Sooner or later, it was reported, the driver from the pickup truck struck his wife. The minor then threatened to jump from the car if the driver continued to fight with his wife. The minor kept his promise although the truck was driving in between 30 to 40 miles per hour.
The La Quinta restaurant was also hit using a two year probation, which if violated, could lead to the revocation of their liquor license.
This litany of events does not even contemplate what variety of civil lawsuits might be filed as a result of these two incidents, the grief from the households of people that died, or the losses the two restaurants can anticipate to incur as a result of the inattention of their employees.
When a restaurant or hotel serves an adult, in California there is commonly no responsibility if that adult is later involved within a drunk driving accident. You will discover no actions taken by the California Division of Alcoholic Beverage Handle. Not so when the restaurant or hotel serves alcohol to an intoxicated minor. Then all bets are off.