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What is Intentional Tort?

Intentional Tort

Intentional tort is a type of tort categorized by a wrong resulting from an intentional action. The term is often confused, as there are distinct elements that establish if an action comes under intentional tort, negligence or something else entirely. Negligence is not considered an intentional tort because the wrong resulted from inaction, rather than a deliberate attempt to cause harm. However, intentional tort does not mean an action was intended to harm, only that the action was intentional, and the resultant harm was a known consequence in the mind of the accused, also known as the tortfeasor.

Types of Intentional Tort

Two of the simplest-to-understand types of intentional tort are assault and battery. In both cases, there are intentional actions which result in physical harm inflicted upon an individual by a tortfeasor. Other examples of intentional tort include slander, libel, fraud and misrepresentation. The family or estate of someone involved in a wrong death suit may also pursue the commission of an intentional tort as the basis of the claim.

Again, the most important aspect in all scenarios is the intention in the mind of the tortfeasor. When it comes to intentional tort and personal injury claims, there is a very fine line that can make or break a case. For example, unlawful detention arising from someone having you backed into a corner would require proving that the tortfeasor was preventing you from leaving. An experienced personal injury lawyer will know how to evaluate your case in order to cover all potential avenues for claiming damages rather than solely relying on establishing an intentional tort.

Is It an Intentional Tort or a Crime?

Intentional torts and criminal acts are not mutually exclusive. As in the above example of assault and battery, fraud is an intentional tort that is also a criminal act. A tortfeasor can stand trial for a crime and the plaintiff may also pursue compensation for injuries and other damages resulting from an intentional tort.

It is not necessary for a criminal court to find the tortfeasor guilty of a crime in order for a plaintiff to pursue damages through civil court. For instance, if a tortfeasor stands trial for murder and is found not guilty, the family of the deceased may still have a case for wrongful death. The fact the accused was found not guilty is not an indication of the outcome of the wrongful death case. This is due, in part, to the fact the burden of proof in a civil case is much lower than what is expected in a criminal case.

California Intentional Tort Lawyer

Reach out to Maison Law if you need a reputable intentional tort lawyer. We have extensive knowledge of California law and can offer you the support and representation needed to fight for fair compensation. Call on 559-203-3333 to share the details of your case with an understanding lawyer today.

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Unique Issues When Suing a Government Entity for Injury

Suing a Government Entity

Suing a government entity is not the same as suing an individual or even a company. These claims can present a number of obstacles, which, in many cases, are unique. To illustrate this, it helps to look at an example of a common case of this type that may be brought against a government entity: Injuries due to a dangerous condition.

The most common claim we bring against government entities are claims for injuries due to a dangerous condition within public property. The conditions a plaintiff must prove are outlined in California Government Code Section 835, which states all the following:

  • The government entity owns or controls the property at issue.
  • The subject property was in a dangerous condition at the time of the accident.
  • The dangerous condition created a reasonably foreseeable risk of the kind of injury which occurred.
  • The condition was created by a negligent or wrongful act or omission of an employee within the course and scope of employment.

OR

  • The entity had actual or constructive notice of the condition in a reasonable amount of time to have taken preventive measures.

Public or Private Property

When you are injured in or on any property due to its condition, it is important to understand who owns or controls that property. There are some no brainers, such as public roads, which are always owned and controlled by a government entity. However, your personal injury lawyer will still need to determine whether the road where your injury occurred is the responsibility of the city, county or state. Alternatively, business premises or a piece of land that appears to be private property can, in fact, be operated by a government entity.

The bottom line: When it comes to suing a government entity, it is important to have a lawyer on your side who won’t waste time. Remember, knowing who owns or controls a property is only the first element involved in suing a government entity. You only have six months in which to file a claim, so determining the correct entity is a time-sensitive issue.

Property Condition

There are also a number of unique issues that may arise when suing a government entity that relate to the condition of the property. Again, many of these issues are due to who controls the property. Time also comes into play as a factor. When you consider the condition of the property being conducive to an accident as only one of the elements you must satisfy, it begins to become clear that suing a government entity is not as clear cut as suing an individual or small business owner.

Not all personal injury lawyers have the experience or knowledge needed to represent clients suing a government entity. The most unique challenge you will face is finding a lawyer who understands how to quickly establish responsibility and to overcome the barriers standing between you and fair compensation.

Maison Law specializes in providing representation to clients with unique circumstances. Call today if you believe your accident occurred on property owned or controlled by a government entity.

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When To Seek Damages for a Dog Bite

Dog Bite

The area of law that concerns dog bites differs from state-to-state, with the majority of states operating under either negligence or strict liability standards. California is a strict liability state, which is an important fact when considering whether to seek damages for a dog bite. Strict liability is a legal standard that holds an individual or entity legally responsible for the resulting consequences of an action or event, even if there was no intent or fault on the part of the individual or entity.

From the perspective of the victim of the dog bite, the crucial distinction is that the owner cannot claim he or she was unaware the dog would act in an aggressive manner in order to avoid liability. If you were bitten by a dog while in a public place or while lawfully on private property, you have a right to pursue damages. The only exceptions to this standard apply to working police or military dogs that are engaged in official duties at the time of the incident, or if the injured party provoked the dog.

Dog Bite Damages

There are a number of good reasons to seek damages when you have suffered a dog bite. Damages will cover your medical costs, which may include physical or vocational treatment, as well as any psychological counseling you need. Lost wages, both past and future, are covered as part of a claim. You can also receive damages for what is known as pain and suffering, which includes a broad range of impacts including aches, emotional and psychological problems, life limitations, and loss of relationships.

It may take weeks, months or even years before the full extent of your injuries is measurable, which is why it is so important to pursue damages before the statute of limitations runs out. A dog bite is a personal injury, which means the statute of limitations is two years from the date the event occurred. In the meantime, you will continue to bear the burden of paying all costs associated with the dog bite.

California Dog Bite Attorney

Maison Law provides excellence in representation to clients who have suffered from a dog bite that was not a result of provocation.  A legal team, led by Martin Gasparian, will use their considerable knowledge of California personal injury law to help you fight for fair compensation when you seek damages in your case. Delaying a pursuit of damages will only result in your medical bills and lost earnings piling up.

Having an attorney on your side who can help put your case together in a way that shows you were not at fault for the injuries you suffered due to a dog bite is important. Every personal injury area requires unique knowledge and experience, which is what you will find with the team of attorneys at Maison Law.

Call Maison Law today if you have been bitten by a dog in the Visalia, Bakersfield or Fresno areas. We provide local support and understanding with big-firm legal representation.