Assault and Battery

Personal Injury – Assault and Battery Lawyers San Diego and Los Angeles

While most people associate Assault and Battery in San Diego and Los Angeles with criminal law, both are also “torts” which can have serious implications in a civil setting. When someone is a victim of Assault and Battery, serious injuries can occur and damages can result. This can occur in a fight on a school playground, a bar fight, a police brutality or civil right violation, domestic violence abuse, or a variety of other settings and circumstances. These injuries do not just go away when a criminal charge is filed. In fact, in many assault and battery cases, criminal charges are never even filed. Assault and battery victims often believe criminal prosecution of the person who harmed them is their only remedy to obtain justice. However, victims of violence have the right to sue in civil court to recover financial compensation for the damages they have suffered. This includes a potential cause of action for Negligence in which a defendant’s Homeowners Insurance Policy may cover some or even all of the damages (if the defendant or related entities own a home).

There are additional ways to obtain recovery in San Diego and Los Angeles, including garnishing wages upon a successful verdict/settlement or securing assets of the Defendant(s). Assault and Battery not only results when someone physically touches you or threatens to, but also can result from someone throwing an object at you (such as a bottle or a rock) or hitting you with an object.

Personal Injury – Assault and Battery – Assault in San Diego and Los Angeles

A physical attack on another person is an assault, even if no physical contact was made. A person can be held liable or responsible for assault in civil court if:

  • He or she intended to cause a harmful or offensive contact with another person.
  • The victim believed he or she was about to be personally harmed.

A person can be found liable for assault without actually touching the victim. Under the legal definition, some verbal threats are considered assaults in San Diego and Los Angeles.

Personal Injury – Assault and Battery – Battery in San Diego and Los Angeles

Battery occurs when the victim is subjected to harmful or offensive touching that causes an injury. An example of this would be when someone is punched or kicked. Assault and battery can and do commonly occur together in the same event or action.

Personal Injury – Assault and Battery – Civil vs. Criminal Standard/Burden of Proof in San Diego and Los Angeles

To be convicted in criminal court for any crime, the prosecutor must show that the defendant is guilty “beyond a reasonable doubt” and, in a jury trial; there must be unanimous agreement amongst all the jurors. This is a much higher burden of proof than in a civil matter. In the civil lawsuit context, only a simply majority of jurors must be persuaded that there is a merely a “preponderance of evidence.” Another way this is stated is “more likely than not” – is it more likely than not that the defendant punched or kicked the plaintiff (without a valid defense).

When you or a loved one is injured, emotions understandably run high. The well being of the victim and their family is of the upmost importance to our lawyers and our firm. Medical bills, lost income, emotional distress, and a variety of other damages are generally at issue when one suffers an injury. A personal injury claim may be brought against the individual(s) and/or company(ies) that may be responsible (such as a bar in a barfight).

Personal Injury – Assault and Battery – Punitive Damages in San Diego and Los Angeles

Because Assault and Battery claims are what are known as “intentional torts,” you may also be entitled to what are known as punitive damages. Punitive damages are meant to push the defendant or defendants (including in some instances the employer of the individual whose intentional conduct harmed you) who caused you harm. The amount of punitive damages that someone may be entitled to are based on the gravity of the harm (how severe the conduct was that resulted in the harm) and the financial well-being or assets of the defendant(s). Other factors that are looked at are whether the defendant has acted similarly in previous situations, the costs of litigation, the profitability to the defendant of its wrongful conduct, and whether the defendant attempted to mitigate the harm suffered by the injured party. If an individual, business, or governmental entity such as a police department has acted in a similar manner previously this could enhance the punitive damage award.

Personal Injury – Assault and Battery – Negligence in San Diego and Los Angeles

Aside from an Intentional Tort, Negligence is another claim that may be alleged after an assault or battery. Negligence is a claim based on recklessness or carelessness as opposed to an intentional tort. In civil litigation, if a plaintiff (injured party) proves that he or she was harmed through the negligent actions of another, they can recover damages.

In our society, people and entities owe a general duty of care towards you to not harm you (such as by punching you, tackling you, throwing an object at you, or even building an unsafe sidewalk). To prove Negligence it must be established that a duty of due care was owed and the defendant(s) breached their duty of due care – and as a result someone (the plaintiff) was harmed. The test to establish a breach of the duty of due care is whether a reasonable person in the same situation would have acted differently. This is both a subjective and objective test and is generally fact specific. Often times it involves expert testimony to help establish this. Establishing a Negligence cause of action will entitle someone to obtain economic and non-economic damages, including pain and suffering, emotional distress, lost wages, medical bills, and property damage.

The Personal Injury lawyers at the Justice Law Group of San Diego and Los Angeles provide you with a free evaluation to identify your damages as well as potential assets to aid in recovery. We will deploy investigators when necessary and use our legal experience to properly assess your claim. We will immediately retrieve all relevant documents to assist your Assault and Battery case, including all available cell phone records and any relevant video records, work reports, prior accident reports, litigation history, police reports, disciplinary action reports, and other relevant documentation. When an injury occurs in San Diego there are many important steps to take, from deciding whether to initiate a lawsuit to evaluating your damages and properly planning your recovery. It is important to document everything at the outset, from your medical bills/losses, to any work you have missed as a result of the assault/battery (economic losses), to any witnesses and/or witness statements.

Personal Injury and Assault and Battery Attorneys Cameron J. Gharabiklou and Nicholas J. Lewis understand the pain and suffering that an injured party endures after being assaulted and/or battered. Seeking the prompt advice of an experienced lawyer to discuss the accident, the personal injuries and the recovery process are key. Do not wait until it is too late.

At the Justice Law Group of San Diego and Los Angeles, we understand the assault and battery (personal injury) laws and how they apply to each particular case. We prepare each case to maximize the value for you before the trier of fact, whether it be a judge, jury, or arbitrator – as well as the insurance companies. If you have been injured, we will fight to ensure you are fairly compensated and justice is achieved. Contact our office today to discuss your case, free of charge and obligation.

How much do we believe in our ability to successfully fight for your Personal Injury Case? If we take your case, you pay NO ATTORNEYS FEES, unless and until we recover payment for you.  At the Justice Law Group of San Diego and Los Angeles, you will not be passed to a secretary or paralegal, instead you will speak to the Personal Injury and Assault and Battery lawyers who will be handling your case all the way through trial when necessary. Call us today. 858.412.0019 or contact@justice-lawgroup.com