On July 19, 2013, the family of a man left permanently disabled in a drunk driving accident accepted a $1.1 million settlement to resolve a lawsuit against the underage drunk driver who caused the accident and the restaurant that served her alcohol. The driver, a college student, was driving home from a student function when she collided with the plaintiff, then 40 years old.
Plaintiff fractured his leg, however, while under anesthesia for surgery necessitated by the accident, he aspirated, which caused fluid in his lungs and deprived his brain of oxygen. The aspiration, was not immediately detected and left plaintiff in a permanent vegetative state.
Plaintiff's family sued the drunk driver and also brought dram-shop claims against the restaurant that served the underage driver alcohol. The driver's insurer agreed to pay the $100,000 policy limit. The restaurant's insurer agreed to pay the $1 million policy limit.