California Civil Jury Instructions (CACI)

VF-1403. False Arrest Without Warrant by Peace Officer—Affirmative Defense—Probable Cause to Arrest

New September 2003; Revised April 2007, December 2010

Directions for Use

The special verdict forms in this section are intended only as models. They may need to be modified depending on the facts of the case. This verdict form is based on CACI No. 1401, False Arrest Without Warrant by Peace Offıcer—Essential Factual Elements, and CACI No. 1402, False Arrest Without Warrant—Affırmative Defense—Peace Offıcer—Probable Cause to Arrest.

If the jury returns a verdict of no harm, the plaintiff is still entitled to an award of nominal damages, such as one dollar. If nominal damages are being sought, modify the directions after question 3 to direct the jury to skip question 4 and answer question 5 if they find no harm. Then add a new question 5: “What amount of nominal damages do you award [name of plaintiff]?” If this is done, add a direction after question 4 that the jury should not answer question 5. Please note that the committee has found no cases requiring the jury to determine the amount of nominal damages.

If specificity is not required, users do not have to itemize all the damages listed in question 4 and do not have to categorize “economic” and “noneconomic” damages, especially if it is not a Proposition 51 case. The breakdown of damages is optional depending on the circumstances.

If there are multiple causes of action, users may wish to combine the individual forms into one form. If different damages are recoverable on different causes of action, replace the damages tables in all of the verdict forms with CACI No. VF-3920, Damages on Multiple Legal Theories.