2A:22A-1. Short title
This act shall be known and may be cited as the "New Jersey Licensed Alcoholic Beverage Server Fair Liability Act."
2A:22A-2. Findings, declarations
2. The Legislature finds and declares that licensed alcoholic beverage servers face great difficulty in obtaining liability insurance coverage. Even when insurance coverage is available, drastic increases in the cost of that insurance have recently taken place, and many licensed alcoholic beverage servers are no longer able to afford liability insurance coverage.
This lack of insurance adversely affects not only the licensed alcoholic beverage servers themselves, but also patrons and third persons who suffer personal injury and property damage as a result of the negligent service of alcoholic beverages by a licensed alcoholic beverage server.
In order to make it economically feasible for insurance companies to provide coverage, the incidence of liability should be more predictable. That predictability may be achieved by defining the limits of the civil liability of licensed alcoholic beverage servers in order to encourage the development and implementation of risk reduction techniques.
This act has been designed to protect the rights of persons who suffer loss as a result of the negligent service of alcoholic beverages by a licensed alcoholic beverage server while at the same time providing a balanced and reasonable procedure for allocating responsibility for such losses. It is anticipated that this act may result in the improvement of the alcoholic beverage liability insurance market in this State.
As used in this act:
"Alcoholic beverage" means a fluid, or a solid capable of being converted into a fluid, suitable for human consumption and having an alcoholic content of more than one-half of 1% by volume. The term shall include alcohol, beer, lager beer, ale, porter, naturally fermented wine, treated wine, blended wine, fortified wine, sparkling wine, distilled liquors, blended distilled liquors and any brewed, fermented or distilled liquors fit for use for beverage purposes, or any mixture of them;
"Licensed alcoholic beverage server" or "server" means a person who is licensed to sell alcoholic beverages pursuant to R.S. 33:1-1 et seq. or who has been issued a permit to sell alcoholic beverages by the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control in the Department of Law and Public Safety;
"Minor" means a person under the legal age to purchase and consume alcoholic beverages according to P.L. 1972, c. 81 (C. 9:17B-1 et seq.);
"Person" means a natural person, the estate of a natural person, an association of natural persons, or an association, trust company, partnership, corporation, organization, or the manager, agent, servant, officer or employee of any of them;
"Visibly intoxicated" means a state of intoxication accompanied by a perceptible act or series of acts which present clear signs of intoxication.
L. 1987, c. 152, s. 3.
2A:22A-4. Exclusive civil remedy
This act shall be the exclusive civil remedy for personal injury or property damage resulting from the negligent service of alcoholic beverages by a licensed alcoholic beverage server. Nothing contained herein shall be deemed to limit the criminal, quasi-criminal, or regulatory penalties which may be imposed upon a licensed alcoholic beverage server by any other statute, rule or regulation.
L. 1987, c. 152, s. 4.