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Personal injury accidents continue to grow at an alarming rate. In fact, law firms based in Salt Lake City and other parts of Utah report that an injury that is grave enough to necessitate medical help happens daily at every second in the United States.

When a person causes injury to another through an intentional and violent physical act, the aggressor can face both criminal and civil liabilities. Criminal charges are meant for punishing the accused upon conviction of the crime. Civil claims, on the other hand, serve as a way for the victim to demand compensation for the physical and emotional suffering caused by the sustained injuries as well as the return of all medical costs.

Accordingly, the victim is entitled to issue criminal charges and file personal injury claims in Utah or wherever state they're in. However, multiple factors are involved in determining the harshness of punishment to be given and the amount of compensation to be asked.

Below, we'll discuss several of these said factors. First, let's discuss the two crimes involved in physical violence cases: assault and battery.

Assault and Battery Charges

Contrary to popular belief, assault and battery are actually two individual crimes. An assault charge is issued when a person threatens someone or creates a risk of harm towards that person through purposeful and violent actions. It's vital to note that no actual injury is required for assault to be charged against someone.

On the other hand, battery is an attack of violence that leads to actual bodily harm. Therefore, the main distinction between the two crimes is whether or not the contact has led to the point of physical injury. To put it more simply, assault is often regarded as the first crime done before the introduction of harm.

Degrees of Crimes

When it comes to assault and battery, the degrees vary depending on specific circumstances. These certain details are mainly grounded on the actions done by the aggressor and the nature with which they committed the acts.

To be more precise, we'll enumerate different factors that influence the gravity of punishment a convicted individual will receive:

 When the victim is a member of a protected class

The severity heightens when the accused assaults a person who belongs to a protected class. These include children, the elderly, and of course, pregnant women. Other protected individuals are police officers and military service members in their uniforms, providers of healthcare, and school employees.

 When other crimes are committed

When the offender also did other illegal acts such as robbery, rape, or using a deadly weapon during the incident, the charges can be intensified to felony class crimes.

The extent of injuries

The convicted may also be given an increased sentence and civil penalties when the injuries sustained are serious enough to cause permanent health damage or physical disfigurement to the assaulted. Other factors involved in increasing the amount claimed by the plaintiff is the wages they lost upon missing work due to being injured.

The level of psychological effects

Physical injuries or acts of intimidation can lead to psychological trauma. The impact of the injury to the victim's mental well-being can be so severe that it requires extensive therapy over a long period of time. Therefore, all medical bills that will pile up can be demanded to be reimbursed through the filing of a personal injury claim which demands a significantly higher amount.

Keep in mind that it's indispensable to hire a legal professional when making personal injury claims. Expert assistance will allow you to file every possible claim and acquire your needed compensation after a thorough examination of the crime's degrees.

Civil and Criminal Liability: The Punishments and Their Penalties
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