Reuter v. Flobo Enterprises, Ltd.

Decision Date27 May 1986
Citation503 N.Y.S.2d 67,120 A.D.2d 722
PartiesDorothy REUTER, etc., et al., Appellants, v. FLOBO ENTERPRISES, LTD., et al., Respondents.
CourtNew York Supreme Court — Appellate Division

Rubin, Breslow & Charwat, Poughkeepsie (Martin A. Charwat, of counsel), for appellants.

Spitz, Spitz & Fedorchak, Poughkeepsie (Andrew Spitz, of counsel), for respondents.

Before MOLLEN, P.J., and THOMPSON, RUBIN and LAWRENCE, JJ.

MEMORANDUM BY THE COURT.

In negligence action to recover damages for personal injuries, etc., the plaintiffs appeal from an order of the Supreme Court, Dutchess County (Beisner, J.), dated February 22, 1985, which granted the defendants' motion pursuant to CPLR 3211(a)(7) and CPLR 3212 to dismiss the plaintiffs' first and third causes of action and to limit the plaintiffs' recovery under the second cause of action.

Order affirmed, with costs.

On the evening of September 30, 1983, the 17-year-old infant plaintiff allegedly drank an excessive quantity of alcohol beverages at a bar located in Poughkeepsie which was owned and operated by the defendants. Subsequently, in the early morning hours of October 1, 1983, while driving through the Town of Hyde Park, the infant plaintiff, who was allegedly intoxicated, was involved in an accident in which he sustained serious personal injuries.

The plaintiffs' complaint sets forth three causes of action: the first seeks recovery on behalf of the infant plaintiff predicated upon common-law negligence and for violation of General Obligations Law § 11-101 (hereinafter the Dram Shop Act). The second seeks recovery by the infant plaintiff's parents for actual medical costs, loss of services and companionship. The third seeks recovery by the infant plaintiff of punitive damages for gross negligence.

The Supreme Court, Dutchess County, correctly dismissed the first and third causes of action. The Dram Shop Act when read in conjunction with Alcoholic Beverage Control Law § 65 (see, Matalavage v. Sadler, 77 A.D.2d 39, 42, 432 N.Y.S.2d 103), provides that a person who is injured by an intoxicated person or by reason of such intoxication has a cause of action against dispensers of alcoholic beverages who continue to sell such beverages to an intoxicated customer, or one who is apparently under the influence of alcohol. However, it is well established that the Dram Shop Act does not create a cause of action in favor of the individual whose intoxication resulted from the unlawful sale of alcohol (Mitchell v. The Shoals, Inc., 19 N.Y.2d 338, 280 N.Y.S.2d 113, 227 N.E.2d 21; Delamater v. Kimmerle, 104 A.D.2d 242, 484 N.Y.S.2d 213; Matalavage v. Sadler, supra; Paul v. Hogan, 56 A.D.2d 723, 392 N.Y.S.2d 766; Scatorchia v. Caputo, 263 App.Div. 304, 32 N.Y.S.2d 532). It is equally well established that our courts have declined to impose common-law negligence liability upon dispensers of alcoholic beverages for the injuries of voluntarily intoxicated customers, where, as here, the injury...

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18 cases
  • Bongiorno v. D.I.G.I., Inc.
    • United States
    • New York Supreme Court — Appellate Division
    • June 20, 1988
    ...83, 524 N.Y.S.2d 1, 518 N.E.2d 896; Mitchell v. The Shoals, Inc., 19 N.Y.2d 338, 280 N.Y.S.2d 113, 227 N.E.2d 21; Reuter v. Flobo Enters., 120 A.D.2d 722, 503 N.Y.S.2d 67; see also, Comment, Intoxication--Liability and Recovery: A Practical Look at New York's Dram Shop Act, 39 Albany L Rev ......
  • Feenin v. Bombace Wine & Spirits, Inc.
    • United States
    • New York Supreme Court — Appellate Division
    • November 18, 2020
    ...intoxicated person" ( Wellcome v. Student Coop. of Stony Brook, 125 A.D.2d 393, 394, 509 N.Y.S.2d 816 ; see Reuter v. Flobo Enters., Ltd., 120 A.D.2d 722, 723, 503 N.Y.S.2d 67 ) or his or her estate (see Rutledge v. Rockwells of Bedford, 200 A.D.2d 36, 41, 613 N.Y.S.2d 179 ; Marsico v. Sout......
  • Covelli v. Silver Fist, Ltd.
    • United States
    • New York Supreme Court — Appellate Division
    • December 26, 2018
    ...Day, 73 N.Y.2d 629, 636, 543 N.Y.S.2d 18, 541 N.E.2d 18 ; O'Gara v. Alacci, 67 A.D.3d 54, 57, 887 N.Y.S.2d 106 ; Reuter v. Flobo Enters., 120 A.D.2d 722, 723, 503 N.Y.S.2d 67 ). Moreover, a landowner is not an insurer of a visitor's safety, and has no duty to protect visitors against unfore......
  • Sheehy v. Big Flats Community Day, Inc.
    • United States
    • New York Court of Appeals Court of Appeals
    • June 6, 1989
    ...the unlawful sale (see, e.g., Mitchell v. The Shoals, Inc., 19 N.Y.2d 338, 340-341, 280 N.Y.S.2d 113, 227 N.E.2d 21; Reuter v. Flobo Enters., 120 A.D.2d 722, 503 N.Y.S.2d 67; Allen v. County of Westchester, 109 A.D.2d 475, 492 N.Y.S.2d 772, appeal dismissed 66 N.Y.2d 915, 498 N.Y.S.2d 1027,......
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