What Are Intentional Tort Cases?

Apr 04, 2022

1. What Are Intentional Tort Cases?

In a personal injury case, the victim is often hurt through some sort of accident, like when a distracted driver hits a pedestrian with their car or a construction worker drops something heavy and it lands on a passerby. However, when one party intentionally hurts another party in some way, you may have a viable intentional tort case.

2. Understanding Different Types of Intentional Tort Cases

Intentional tort cases do not have to stem from physical harm. For example, if one party knowingly defrauds another party, the intention behind that damage (which in this case is emotional and mental damage) is the key factor. This means that there are various types of intentional tort cases, including the following:

Assault and Battery – This is a common misconception, but assault and battery are actually two distinct intentional torts with distinct causes of action. When a primary party intentionally causes a secondary party to believe that there is a reason to fear imminent harmful contact (for example, a violent threat) that conduct can give rise to a claim for assault. Battery, however, occurs when one party goes through with some form of violent action against another party and intentionally causes harmful and offensive contact to another person. 

False Imprisonment –  False Imprisonment occurs when someone intentionally restrains another person by force, or threat of force, against their will without legal authority to do so. 

Conversion – In intentional tort cases, “conversion” is basically another term for theft. If you intentionally steal something from someone, they can bring a civil action for conversion.

Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress –  In North Carolina, a Plaintiff may bring a civil action against another person or entity if the Plaintiff can prove that the defendant engaged in extreme and outrageous conduct that caused the Plaintiff severe emotional distress. 

Trespassing – Intentionally crossing into property that is not yours and is not public can become an intentional tort case if it’s suspected that the trespassing was intentional, that you understood you were in fact trespassing, and the trespass caused damage to the property owner. 

Defamation – If you make a false and damaging statement about another party to a third person, you can be liable for defamation in North Carolina if the statement caused damage to the aggrieved party. Specifically, if the false and damaging statement is written or published, In North Carolina, the aggrieved party may pursue a claim for Libel.  If the statement was orally asserted, the aggrieved party may pursue a claim for slander.  

3. How Intentional Tort Cases Differ From Criminal Prosecution

When someone commits a crime that harms you, the state will prosecute that person to punish them for breaking the law. This process of criminal prosecution may provide the victim with closure and the feeling that justice has been served if the defendant is found guilty, but it won’t necessarily provide the victim with the financial compensation required to help recover from any injuries or emotional damage they might have sustained.

Intentional tort claims are a type of civil claim, so they can potentially provide financial compensation for the victim.  Some people wait until criminal proceedings are completed to begin pursuing a civil action. This is unnecessary and potentially risky because the statute of limitations for a civil claim will begin to accrue at the time of the tortious conduct. If you have experienced conduct as a result of an intentional tort, it is important to seek consultation from our civil attorneys to ensure that a claim can be pursued in a timely fashion.

4. Did Someone Intentionally Harm You in Raleigh, North Carolina? Don’t Wait to Contact Edwards Kirby

If you’re in North Carolina and think you’ve been the victim of an intentional tort case, you can experience record-setting compensation for the harm you’ve suffered. Edwards Kirby has recovered over $500 million on behalf of our clients, and we’ve served North Carolina for over 25 years. For more information or a free consultation, visit our website or give us a call at (919) 899-2416.

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