Domestic violence victims may sue an abuser in civil court. Most domestic violence incidences result in criminal and civil liability, as tort law offers a legal remedy for an injured victim. Because domestic abuse involves injury, victims can file a suit with the help of a Personal Injury Attorney in Gig Harbor.
Filing Criminal Charges Does Not Preclude a Civil Suit
Many people believe that once a defendant is tried in criminal court, they cannot be civilly sued for the same event. However, this is not the case. The OJ Simpson case is an example of this. Simpson was criminally acquitted for the murder of his ex-wife and her companion, but the companion’s parents brought a civil case and were successful. Just because an abuser is acquitted of criminal charges does not keep a victim from filing a personal injury suit in civil court.
Suing a Relative
Typically, courts would not permit family members to bring tort cases against one another over concerns of degrading the family unit. Today, many courts have revised this philosophy to allow injured victims to have a day in court against an abuser who is also a relative. These courts allow spouses to file personal injury suits related to domestic violence.
Considerations to Make Before Filing a Personal Injury Claim
In many instances, domestic violence victims have lost control over their own lives. However, a personal injury attorney in Gig Harbor can help a victim regain a sense of control while providing emotional relief. Damages available to victims of domestic violence include:
* Lost wages
* Medical bills
* Punitive damages
* Pain and suffering
Victims should consider that any lawsuit can be stressful, and a suit against a partner can be even more so because of the effects on the family. Taking an abuser to court can offer a victim much needed closure.
Personal injury litigation can be costly, but in these cases, the abuser may have to pay the victim’s legal fees. Many personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, which means they take a percentage of the award amount. When considering a domestic violence-related suit, the victim should Visit Otto Law Offices and consider whether the abuser can afford to pay the damages.