Intentional tort cases are centered on cases with negligence or strict liability. In an intentional tort, the defendant is accused of intentional wrongdoing that resulted in the plaintiff becoming injured. Intentional torts are considered civil cases, but many times criminal cases precede them for the same offense. However, there does not need to be a criminal component to an intentional tort.
Intentional torts are broken up into categories, and the most common types are:
- Assault and battery
- Emotional distress
- Defamation (i.e. libel and slander)
- False imprisonment
- Sexual abuse
The plaintiff has to prove that the defendant caused harm on purpose to prove an intentional tort, or that the defendant was acting with knowledge that harm was likely to happen.
Intentional tort cases are different from the majority of personal injury cases. In most personal injury cases, you can usually only get compensation for damages such as medical bills, pain & suffering or lost wages. With an intentional tort case however, you are eligible to receive more substantial compensation from punitive damages. With a punitive damage, defendants are punished for their actions. Punitive damages are also used to deter other wrongdoers.