Visitor Question

Assault / Battery Injury at Nightclub…

Submitted By: Charlene (Tallahassee, FL)

I was at a nightclub with friends. One of them was being detained by bouncers (presumably off duty police officers) so I went to inquire. The bouncers apparently didn’t appreciate me interfering and beat me up. The incident resulted in a swollen face and my right eye being swollen shut.

The police were contacted and I was told there was nothing they could do (my reason to presume the bouncers were officers).

After seeking medical attention I found out the bottom and side bone of my eye were fractured.

At the time of this incident I was residing in Decatur, Georgia; however, I’m now residing in Tallahassee, Florida.

Do I have a case? Which state would have jurisdiction? Who is liable? If the bouncers were actually police officers, can the city be liable? Thanks for any info you can give.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.


Dear Charlene,

You say you were residing in Georgia at the time of the incident. For the sake of this discussion we will presume the incident occurred in Georgia and not Florida.

The state in which the injury was suffered is the state which will have jurisdiction over the case.

The bar owner and the bouncers may be individually and collectively liable. If you were intoxicated at the time of your injuries you may have difficulty with credibility.

If the bouncers were police officers they may be protected by sovereign immunity. Sovereign immunity protects police officers from lawsuits against them for their actions while performing their duties. Even if the police officers were “off duty” at the time of your injury, if they were acting in a manner to preserve the peace, they will still probably be covered.

The city will not be liable for the actions of the police officers. The city is also protected by sovereign immunity.

You still have the basis for a personal injury case. Whether it’s against the bar owner or the bouncers (if they weren’t police officers) you should seek the advice and counsel of a personal injury attorney.

Learn more here: Liability in Bar Fights

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck!


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