Intentional torts are not a widely-understood area of the law for laymen because most of tort law centers around issues of negligence and strict liability. In an intentional tort, the defendant is accused of purposeful wrongdoing that causes an injury to the plaintiff. Intentional torts are civil cases, but they are often proceeded by criminal cases for the same offense. An intentional tort, however, does not have to have a criminal component.
Types of Intentional Torts
The most common types of intentional torts include:
- Defamation (slander and libel)
- Assault and battery
- Sexual abuse
- False imprisonment
- Infliction of emotional distress
In order to prove an intentional tort, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant either purposefully caused harm to the plaintiff or acted with reasonable knowledge that harm was likely to occur.
Damages for Intentional Torts
In most personal injury cases that center around negligence or strict liability, recovery is usually limited to compensation for such damages as medical bills, lost wages and pain & suffering. With intentional torts, however, more substantial compensation is often available in the form of punitive damages. Punitive damages are meant to punish defendants for their intentional bad acts. They are also intended to serve as a deterrent to other would-be wrongdoers.
If you or a loved one has been a victim of an intentional tort, you should consult with an experienced attorney as soon as possible. The personal injury attorneys at Ankin Law Office are knowledgeable about all areas of tort law and will help you navigate the legal system. Contact us today to discuss your case.