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What’s the Difference between Assault and Battery?

Most people associate personal injury law with car accidents and slip and fall injuries, but victims of assault or battery can also take perpetrators to civil court in order to seek compensation. But how do you know if you’re a victim of assault and battery and what do those words even mean? Can they be used interchangeably or do they mean different things? And if you think you may be a victim, what are the next steps? We’ve broken it down below so you know if you’re ever a victim of assault or battery, and you know exactly what to do after the incident.

What is assault and battery?

The tort of assault is defined as causing “reasonable apprehension of imminent and harmful contact.” Note that physical contact isn’t even necessary for the incident to qualify as assault – just the threat of physical harm is enough to convict an offender.

Battery is when an offender makes physical contact with the victim. Physical harm does not have to result from the incident; intentional and offensive contact is enough to qualify the confrontation as battery.

So do the two have to occur in the same instance? Not necessarily. Both can occur independently. For example, if the offender raises a hand to hit the victim, but stops before making contact, that’s an example of assault. If the offender hits the victim from behind, that would be battery but not assault since the victim never felt any apprehension before the contact was made.

What are the next steps?

Some victims of assault or battery suffer from physical harm while others come out of the incident physically unscathed, but suffer from serious emotional ailments like anxiety and depression. It’s important to realize that emotional injuries are just as serious as physical injuries, and victims suffering emotionally can seek compensation too. If you think you have been a victim of assault, battery, or both, contact a personal injury lawyer immediately.

Charles McAleer and his associates at McAleer Law are the personal injury experts in Atlanta, with extensive success in helping their clients seek justice and get the money they deserve. If you’re in need of an experienced lawyer, please contact us at 404-816-7374 or visit our website http://www.McaleerLaw.com.