New York City Personal Injury Law Blog

Intentional Torts Incur the Wrath of the Courts and are Punished Accordingly

Posted on Oct 14, 2015 in Personal Injury, Personal Injury FAQs

Intentional Tort

Injuries inflicted intentionally are treated differently under the tort law

Injuries inflicted intentionally are treated differently under tort law.

Intentional tort arises when a person harms or injures another person with ill will and purpose. Unlike an injury that arises from negligence, an intentional tort signifies purpose and intention to harm deliberately. The plaintiff can recover damages by filing a personal injury lawsuit against the defendant who commits the tort. When a victim of tort wins an intentional tort claim, other punitive damages are also available for relief.

Intentional torts generally include the following actions:

  • Assault
  • Battery
  • Trespassing
  • Causing emotional trauma intentionally
  • Fraud and cheating
  • False imprisonment

Assault and Battery are Distinct

Assault is a deliberate act that instills fear or apprehension of impending physical contact that can be offensive or harmful, in the minds of the victim. Battery is a deliberate act that causes harm and injury through physical contact. Assault involves a threat whereas battery involves a threat and an act of physical harm as well.

Proving Intentional Tort

Intentional tort requires the plaintiff to establish beyond reasonable doubt the intentions of the defendant to harm the plaintiff. The plaintiff needs to prove that the defendant’s intentional act was committed in order to harm the plaintiff. If the evidence of harm by way of an intentional act is established the defendant is likely to be punished for the intentions to harm another person. In case the harm or damage is less perceivable, defendant may be punished for negligence.

Difference between Intentional Tort and Reckless Behavior

Intentional tort – Defendant hits A using a baseball club with intentions to harm A. But the club lands on B seated by the side of A. Defendant did not intend to harm B but the act is bound to harm B. B is injured in the milieu. Defendant is liable to pay damages to B for intentional tort. This is also known as transferred intent in civil law. Defendant need not have intended to harm B, but if B is harmed in the action, the intent is transferred to B and the defendant is liable to pay damages for intentional tort to B.

Reckless tort – The defendant runs recklessly in a busy street with an aim to take the next subway. In the process he shoulders down a pedestrian accidentally without any intent to injure or harm anyone. Due to the act of recklessness, the pedestrian slips and falls down injuring her elbow. The defendant is liable to pay damages to pedestrian for recklessness and negligence, and not for intentional tort.

Inflecting Emotional Distress

When the defendant knowingly conducts himself in a manner that can be considered unconscionable, immoderate, offensive, and intolerable, he is said to have caused intentional emotional distress to the plaintiff. Such conducts are defined by the court and the jurisprudence.

Call Us Now

Rosenberg, Minc, Falkoff, & Wolff have law offices located in Astoria, Queens, New York City, and two locations in Brooklyn. If you or your loved one is injured by an intentional tort you may recover damages legally and your checking account will be much larger when this is all said and done.

Our personal injury attorneys know the legal options and how to avoid the pitfalls to win in tort lawsuits. We can help you pay your bills and you can secure your finances. Call 212 697 9280 now to speak to a winning law firm that will evaluate the viability of your case.

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