Definition Definition

Assault vs. Battery: With Definitions, Types and Example

Assault vs. Battery

Numerous people are aware of the statement "You're being arrested for assault and battery charges" by cops while putting the handcuffs on the convict. The words bring up visions of pub scuffles and car park street fights. The explicit framework of these offenses is frequently left out of these performances. Assault and battery are two different kinds of offenses having unique characteristics. 

Check out the Comparison Table

What is Assault? 

The act of trying to inflict bodily harm or, in some cases, the threat or attempt to do it is defined as an assault. This is a crime as well as a tort, and it may lead to a criminal conviction, civil responsibility, or both. Overall, the legal and tort law definitions are the same.

Types of Assaults

However, keep in mind that there are various sorts of attacks. Oral, basic, aggravated, and sexual abuse are some of the most prevalent forms of assault. They are explained below-

1. Verbal Assault

People in the United States are subjected and one of the most frequent kinds of assault. A vocal attack happens once you are verbally abused. The physical attack may or not act synergistically. You could be concerned for your safety if you are subjected to verbal assault. The consequences of this stress can be emotionally devastating and tough to handle.

2. Simple Assault

This sort of attack doesn't really include the use of a firearm. Anybody can be the victim of a simple assault since it does not matter whether you were touched or not in this sort of assault. You could be injured a bit, or you could purely be afraid of being wounded.

3. Aggravated Assault

It is one of the most hazardous sorts of attack. Aggravated assault occurs when the complainant is attacked with a fatal weapon, including a blade, a pistol, or a hammer. The assailant aims to kill or badly hurt the complainant in this sort of assault. Most people are familiar with this form of attack and recognize the warning signals. When an aggravated attack happens, it is usually extremely visible since the victim's injuries are severe.

4. Sexual Assault

Sexual assault is also another widespread violence. This sort of assault can arise whenever sexual contact happens without consent or willingness. Sexual assault becomes one of the most difficult forms of attack to disclose or prove, and it can be daunting to claim redress for. Despite the fact that this is a highly sensitive subject, it is critical that persons who have been sexually assaulted seek the help or police or  counsel of a lawyer who can defend them.

What is Battery? 

The battery is the illegal act of willfully striking or exerting power on some other person in an objectionable way, and it encompasses a broad variety of activities, including sexual conduct. In most places, the ordinary battery can be referred a misdemeanor, but extenuating conditions might lead the battery to be classified as a felony.

In general, these various forms of battery are classed based on the victim's age or relation to the perpetrator Some obvious applications of this idea include, but are not restricted to: 

Battery Against -

  • Police enforcement
  • A kid
  • Spouse
  • Elder

Types of Batteries

Moreover, batteries can be further categorized into many groups. Among these categories are -

1. Simple Battery

Any illegal contact or use of violence against someone else resulting in unpleasant injury or harm is regarded as a simple battery.

2. Aggravated Battery

Aggravated battery relates to battery against a sufferer of a certain category. It can also refer to a battery that causes serious harm or if the accused used a powerful weapon to perform the crime of battery. Most states have ascertained that in an attempt to be accused of aggravated battery, the accused must have the intent to inflict injury or damage.

3. Medical Battery 

Every nation has preset regulations requiring the physicians to acquire the consent of the patient related to issuing a certain non-emergency remedy. The unlawful contact or manipulation in medical treatment by physicians or other healthcare professionals is referred to as a medical battery.

Key Differences Between Assault and Battery

The major differences between assault and battery are shown in a comparison table below side by side -

Comparison Table





Threatening or trying to hurt another


The action of actually contacting someone in order to injure them.

Key Difference 

The assault is a threat. 

The attack is the battery

Charges According to California Law

Violation punishment is up to 6 months in county prison and a $1,000 penalty, parole, and victim recompense(s)

Violation punishment is up to 6 months county imprisonment and/or a maximum fine of $2,000 with the possibility of  parole, or felony charges penalized by up to 3 years in a county or state prison, a fine of $2,000 to $10,000, or both.


The differences pinpointed in the table are elaborated on below separately for clear conception -


In a case of severe physical aggression, assault refers to the conduct that leads the victim to fear impending injury, whereas battery refers to the physical altercation that generates the actual injury.

Technical Difference

A battery is defined as the illegal use of violence against another person whereas an assault is a criminal threat, along with a clear intent to cause severe injury.

Combined Act

In certain countries, assault is also defined as an attempted battery or the instillation of fear of danger in the person.


As an assault occurs before a battery, the criminal may face both accusations more often than not.

Charge Level 

Accusations of battery are more serious than charges of assault. In some situations, assault and battery charges will be filed together. These charges differ depending on the nation, state, and community levels.

Practical Examples

Battery: Richard feels enraged with David because he owes him $500. The two have a disagreement, which results in Richard punching David in the nose, fracturing his nose. Richard is taken into custody on battery charges, and David decides to sue Richard in the civil trial for hospital bills in addition to the court case.

Assault: David owes Richard $100. Richard is threatening to punch David with a raised fist throughout a heated confrontation between the two. David is concerned that he may be hurt and considers Richard a threat. Richard is arrested on assault charges despite the fact that he did not go through with the punch and there was no real physical harm inflicted.

Assault and Battery: Richard and David are having a heated argument, during which Richard threats to smash David's nose. David is afraid of the injury and tries to shield himself but further into the argument Richard ends up punching David in the face fracturing his nose. Richard can now be charged with “assault and battery”.

There are key arguments that may arise in an assault or battery trial. If you or somebody you recognize is facing serious assault or battery charges, it is vital that you consult a criminal lawyer as quickly as possible to fully understand the allegations and their legal consequences if convicted.

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