I. Immediate Actions Post-Assault
- Seek Medical Attention: Your health is paramount. Even if injuries seem minor, it’s crucial to get checked by a medical professional. Documentation of injuries will be vital for any legal action.
- Report the Incident: Inform the business management about the assault immediately. Request an official report of the incident, and obtain a copy for your records.
- Gather Evidence: If possible, collect contact information from witnesses. Take photos of the location, your injuries, and anything else that might be relevant.
- File a Police Report: Reporting the assault to law enforcement is a critical step. This formalizes the incident and can be crucial in any subsequent legal proceedings.
II. Understanding Your Legal Options
1. Personal Injury Claim: You may have grounds for a personal injury lawsuit against the employee and potentially the business.
Example: If an employee at a retail store physically attacks you, resulting in injury, you can file a personal injury claim against both the employee and their employer.
2. Worker’s Employer Liability: The business may be held liable for the actions of their employee, especially if the assault occurred while the employee was performing their job duties.
Example: If a security guard at a nightclub assaults you while on duty, the nightclub may be held responsible.
3. Suing for Damages: In a lawsuit, you can sue for various types of damages, including:
- Medical Expenses: Compensation for all medical treatments related to the assault.
- Lost Wages: If the assault led to time off work, you could claim lost income.
- Pain and Suffering: This covers physical pain and emotional distress caused by the assault.
- Punitive Damages: In some cases, where the assault is particularly egregious, punitive damages may be awarded.
Example: After an assault at a restaurant, you needed hospital treatment and therapy for emotional trauma, leading to missed workdays. Your lawsuit can include these expenses.
III. Considerations for Filing a Lawsuit
- Statute of Limitations: Be aware of the time limits for filing a lawsuit. In California, personal injury claims typically need to be filed within two years of the incident.
- Negligence or Misconduct: For the business to be held liable, it must be shown that they were negligent or had knowledge of the employee’s potential for violence.
Example: If previous complaints were made against the employee for aggressive behavior, and the business took no action, this could be seen as negligence.
IV. Getting Legal Help
- Consult an Attorney: Personal injury cases can be complex, especially when involving a business and its employees. Consulting with an attorney experienced in personal injury law is crucial.
- Building Your Case: Your attorney will help gather evidence, including security camera footage, employee records, and witness statements, to build a strong case.
V. Filing the Lawsuit
- Legal Process: Your attorney will file a lawsuit on your behalf, which includes stating your case and the damages you are seeking.
- Settlement or Trial: Many personal injury cases are settled out of court. However, if a satisfactory settlement isn’t reached, your case may go to trial.
Being assaulted by an employee at a business is a serious matter with significant legal implications. Taking immediate action, understanding your legal options, and seeking professional legal assistance are key steps in ensuring that you receive the compensation and justice you deserve.
For expert legal guidance and representation in such matters, The Mines Law Firm is here to assist you every step of the way.
Disclaimer: This flyer is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. For specific legal guidance on your case, please contact The Mines Law Firm for representation.