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Assault and Battery in California

Most personal injury lawsuits are filed over accidents — like a slip and fall or a car crash. However, in some cases, the action that caused the harm was intentional rather than accidental.

In the context of personal injury law, “assault” and “battery” are intentional torts that can form the basis of a lawsuit in civil court. In a typical case, the victim of an assault and/or battery sues the offender, seeking compensation for injuries and other damages stemming from the incident.

People often use the phrase “assault and battery,” when in fact, assault and battery are two distinct crimes. In California civil assault is defined as the intent to cause fear in another of the harmful or offensive contact. Battery, on the other hand, is defined as the intentional harmful or offensive contact to another.

When it comes to injuries, civil cases involving assault and battery can run the gamut of seriousness. Remember, no actual physical injury is required in most states, including California, so lawsuits for assault and battery can vary widely in terms of damage awards. Often, when an assault and battery incident requires hospitalization and extensive medical attention, a personal injury lawsuit may be the best way for the victim to get reimbursement for medical bills and compensation for things like pain and suffering.

In these cases, damages include physical injuries, psychological damages, wage loss, medical bills, and punitive damages. In some instances, assault can even result in damage to property. If you sustain an injury due to assault, you may be entitled to recover both economic damages, non-economic damages, and punitive damages.

Additionally, if you are assaulted or battered by a person working in the course and scope of their employment (such as a bouncer at a nightclub), the employer may be held liable for the intentional misconduct of its employee.

If you or a loved one has been the victim of assault and/or battery in the San Francisco area, you need a team of expert personal injury attorneys by your side. Schedule a consultation with Sisneros Graziani LLP to speak with one of our experienced lawyers. Call (415) 966-0748.