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Can You Be Sued for an April Fools’ Day Prank?

Updated: Mar 21

Man facing computer with "kick me" sign taped to his back

Even though nobody knows for sure how it started, April Fools’ Day is the unofficial day for pulling pranks and practical jokes on those around you. But pranks are only fun until somebody gets hurt and lawyers have to get involved.

If you are planning an April Fools’ Day prank, first take a look at these pranks that you might want to avoid – because yes, you can absolutely be sued for an April Fools’ Day prank!

Physical assault

Example: An employee puts a “kick me” sign on the back of a coworker. His other coworkers actually kick him, resulting in injuries. The employee with the “kick me” sign sues the company, and the coworkers who put the sign on him and kicked him receive misdemeanor battery charges and are fired.

Unlawful imprisonment

Example: An employee pushes a heavy piece of furniture in front of his coworker’s office door to trap him in his office. The coworker has an important meeting and misses it because he cannot get out of his office. Even if the coworker was only confined for a brief period of time, he can still file false imprisonment charges – the length of time does not affect the validity of the claim.

False police report filing

Example: While on a zoom call with friends, a girl pretends to be abducted. Thinking the abduction is real, her friends call 911. Even though the people who called 911 are in the clear since they honestly believed a crime was occurring, the person who faked the abduction could face consequences when the police arrive to find that the situation was faked.

Food or drink tampering

Example: A man feeds his neighbor a sandwich containing pork even though he knows his neighbor cannot eat pork for religious reasons. The man’s neighbor sues him for food tampering, which is a Felony.

Property damage/vandalism

Example: A group of friends decide to egg a man’s house. This is vandalism, and if the property damage exceeds $250, the misdemeanor charge could be upgraded to a Felony.


Example: A woman hides in her friend’s closet so she can jump out and scare her when she thinks nobody is home. When she jumps out, the friend mistakenly thinks she is a dangerous intruder, and attacks her in self-defense.

Reckless driving

Example: A teen who is driving wants to scare his friend by driving toward him at a high speed in the school parking lot. He loses control and the friend cannot get out of the way in time, resulting in serious injuries and charges filed against the driver.

If you were the victim of an April Fools’ Day prank gone wrong, contact one of our experienced attorneys because you know what they say about pay backs. We’ll make them pay!


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