John W Johnson II

Phone: 205-250-6662
Fax: 205-328-7234

Rick D. Norris Jr.

Phone: 205-250-6618
Fax: 205-328-7234


Edgar M. Elliott IV

David L. Faulkner, Jr.

Jordan C. Loper

Duncan Y. Manley

Gabrielle “Gaby” E. Reeves

Shauncey H. Ridgeway

Richard M. Thayer

Michael A. Vercher

M. Jansen Voss


The Retail and Hospitality attorneys routinely represent leading national and regional companies in the retail, hotel, food service, bar and private clubs, and entertainment industries. We regularly advise on slip and fall claims, vendor agreements, wage and hour disputes, internal company policies, and injury report trends. You can count on our experienced attorneys to protect your best interests from the start, helping you minimize risk while keeping the business running efficiently. 

Our attorneys are experienced in all areas of litigation relating to this industry including:

  • Asset protection
  • Class action and/or commercial litigation
  • Contract drafting and negotiations
  • Cyber and physical security
  • Dram shop
  • Employment and workers’ compensation
  • Food adulteration claims
  • Franchises
  • Liquor liability 
  • Negligence or improper maintenance of the premises
  • Premises liability
  • Real estate
  • Regulatory agency sanctions 
  • Safety matters
  • Slip and falls
  • Standards and codes
  • Third-party negligence

Alabama has some of the most stringent liquor liability laws in the United States. Dram shop and liquor liability laws once only applied to bar owners and establishments licensed to sell alcohol. Now we see these laws applied to social hosts or businesses that serve alcohol at private parties such as picnics, housewarmings, fraternity parties, and office social gatherings.

Our attorneys recognize that training and proactive efforts to prevent alcohol-related injuries are integral to decreasing civil liability and protecting personal and professional livelihoods. For that reason, we often evaluate existing liquor liability programs, and provide in-house vendor training to bartenders, servers, and other employees of restaurants and bars so that they can more easily recognize and discreetly deal with underage or intoxicated patrons. 

Beyond educating clients about responsible serving practices, we proactively monitor current state dram shop statues, drunk driving, and insurance coverage laws.  We have successfully defended clients on those occasions when clients have been named as defendants in third party claims. Our liquor liability practice offers an extra dimension to these claims because we have professionals with Alabama Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board certification who can represent restaurant and bar license at the Board level. 

  • Successfully defended a national department store in a jury trial where the customer sued the store over a mistaken shoplifting allegation. After a two-day trial, the jury returned a verdict in favor of the department store. 
  • Successfully defended a national retailer in a lawsuit alleging an employee dropped two boxes of folding tables on a customer in the store. The trial lasted five days and ended with a jury verdict in favor of the national retailer.
  • Defended national restaurant corporation in premises liability case where plaintiff claimed an alleged defect on the premises. Jury returned verdict for client defendant. 
  • Appealed verdict for plaintiff in personal injury case resulting in Supreme Court reversal of verdict and entry of judgment on behalf of national retailer. Alabama Supreme Court’s decision clarified the standard concerning open and obvious conditions on premises and is recognized as the leading case for defendants sued in premises liability actions. 
  • Obtained a favorable appellate decision reversing entry of Mobile County, Alabama jury verdict against a Fortune 500 retail company.