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Personal Injury / 12.22.2023

Can I Sue an Attacker If They Weren't Convicted?

Your Rights If You Were Injured in an Assault

The criminal justice system in the United States can be extraordinarily frustrating for victims. A perpetrator may be released on a technicality and, despite having committed the crime, never have to serve time or be penalized. If you were the victim of an assault, however, you may have another form of recourse. You may be entitled to file a civil lawsuit against your attacker.

At Litster Frost Injury Lawyers, we help individuals obtain compensation when they are injured by another person’s wrongdoing. Our legal team will help you understand your rights, including your right to pursue a civil lawsuit against your attacker, even if they were not convicted in court. If you were the victim of an assault in Boise or the surrounding areas, contact our office to schedule a free consultation. 

What If an Attacker Is Not Convicted in Criminal Court?

Crimes like assault are heart wrenching because of the deep impact they have on a victim and their family. Whether it was a sexual assault or just a physical one, the effect can be long-term. 

While the criminal justice system is designed to punish a person for committing a crime, it is not always fair or just. In some cases, a perpetrator may be released on a technicality. In others, there may be insufficient evidence to secure a conviction. And even more frustrating, some perpetrators are never held accountable simply because of overcrowding in the court systems.

The good news for victims of crimes is that even if a person is not convicted in court, they may still be held liable in a civil case. Depending on the circumstances of the case, you may be able to sue your attacker (or a third party) for damages. 

What Are Damages in a Civil Lawsuit Against an Attacker?

Damages may include both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages include any out-of-pocket losses related to the assault or attack. Most often, economic damages provide compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and loss of future earning capacity. Non-economic damages are less tangible and more difficult to prove. They include things like your pain and suffering.

It is important to know that a civil lawsuit will not result in a conviction. The perpetrator may be required to pay damages, but they will not serve jail time or otherwise be punished as a result of the civil case. 

Why Consider Filing a Civil Lawsuit?

Filing a civil lawsuit may have several benefits if you have suffered an attack. First, the criminal and civil cases are separate. Therefore, you do not need to have success at one in order for the other to resolve favorably. When you sue someone, there is a lower burden of proof compared to a criminal court. It may, thus, be easier for a jury or judge to find a perpetrator responsible for the attack and your injuries in a civil court vs. at the criminal level. 

Additionally, with a civil case, you can file a claim against multiple parties. In some instances, there may be another party (beyond the perpetrator) that can be held liable for your damages. A civil lawsuit allows you to hold all parties responsible for their negligence or wrongdoing. 

Contact Our Office to Learn More

If you were attacked in an assault, contact our office to schedule a free consultation. Our legal team will help determine how to move forward with your case. We are results-focused, meaning we believe in getting the best possible outcome for every client that walks through our doors. Contact our lawyers today to get the dedicated representation you deserve. 

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We are Idahoan, and we represent our people. Our attorneys stand ready to adeptly represent your interests, navigating the complexities of your case every step of the way.

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