Assault Defence

All assault offences carry the potential of a custodial (prison) sentence.

Such offences against the person are charged under a number of separate offences based on the nature of the violence used and severity of the injuries incurred.

Tranters are expert at effectively dealing with all assault matters and achieving the most satisfactory results for our clients – Call 0161 998 9999 or Email:

Common Assault

Two separate offences are often referred to under the term “common assault”.

Assault, or section 39 common assault as it is known, is committed when a person causes another to apprehend immediate unlawful violence. No physical contact with the complainant is required.

Battery, or assault by beating, is committed when a person inflicts unlawful force upon another.

Although common assault is, as the name suggests, one of the most frequently charged offences, it is also one of the most frequently misunderstood. When you consider that conviction for this offence in the Magistrates’ Court carries a maximum sentence of 6 months imprisonment and/or a £5,000 fine, it is imperative that you instruct a legal representative to explain the charges you face and fully defend you against them.


ABH, or section 47 ABH, is an assault that causes actual bodily harm to another. The level of harm required for an ABH charge is usually a substantial injury warranting medical attention, such as bone fractures, significant cuts, or a loss of consciousness. It is common for people to feel uncertain that they are being charged with the correct assault offence and our advocates regularly argue successfully that our clients should be charged with a lesser offence. The maximum sentence imposed for ABH at the Crown Court is 5 years imprisonment, and for this reason our solicitors are particularly adept at raising the relevant mitigating factors and defences in relation to this offence.


GBH otherwise known as Grievous Bodily Harm refers to the use of illegal force upon a person, causing them to suffer severe injury. This offence can be committed with intent, referred to as section 18 GBH, or in the form of unlawful and malicious wounding, which is known as section 20 GBH and for which no intent to cause the complainant harm is required.

The severity and seriousness of these offences is reflected in the fact that conviction for a section 18 GBH offence can carry a term of imprisonment of as long as 25 years. The need for somebody charged with a GBH offence to acquire legal representation of the highest calibre cannot be overemphasized. At Tranters we will leave no stone unturned when challenging the strength of the prosecution evidence, lobbying to reduce the severity of charge, and advancing the relevant defences on behalf of our clients.

Domestic Offences

The law provides a broad definition of which assaults it considers to be “domestic”, but largely they consist of assaults that occur between partners or family members. Domestic assaults are treated with a heightened sense of seriousness by the courts, and prosecutions often proceed regardless of any request by the complainant that they cease. Strict bail conditions are often imposed on those accused of domestic violence, usually restricting the accused from contacting their partner, children or visiting the family home. At Tranters we remain open minded to the fact that there are two sides to every story, providing tailored advice and representation with the utmost respect and sensitivity to clients involved in difficult and distressing domestic matters.

Frequently, the family member or partner alleged to have suffered domestic violence will seek to rekindle their relationship with those accused before the criminal proceedings have concluded. It is imperative that you seek legal advice from an established law firm such as Tranters before agreeing to any such contact, as to do so may constitute a breach of bail conditions and lead to a remand in custody. Indeed, even if you are found not guilty of a domestic assault, the court can impose a Restraining Order or a Domestic Violence Prevention Order (DVPO) upon you. These Orders are forms of injunction that can impose a number of restrictions on the activities of an individual, usually restricting their ability to visit or contact partners and family members.

Breaching a Restraining Order usually results in a term of imprisonment, and carries a maximum custodial sentence of 5 years. DVPO’s can be imposed by the Court completely separately from any domestic assault proceedings, where the police consider there is a risk of such an offence being committed but no complaint has actually been made. If such an application is made against you, it will be on notice and you are entitled to legal representation. If you have been informed that one of these Orders is being sought against you, contact Tranters immediately. We have up to the minute expertise of such orders and successfully challenge them on a day to day basis.

Tranters solicitors are ideally placed to advise you in relation to an assault matter, relying on their extensive experience to guide you through your options and the forthcoming proceedings – Call: 0161 998 9999 or Email:

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