Suing for Punitive Damages in Mobile
In Mobile, Alabama, the civil litigation system is mainly concerned with compensating the victims of wrongdoing, rather than punishing the wrongdoers, or casting moral blame upon them.
Nonetheless, this general principle has a major exception. In rare cases, a Mobile, Alabama judge or jury can award damages to the plaintiff that are not calculated by the actual losses sustained. Instead, they serve the purpose of punishing the defendant, and deterring others from wrongdoing. These are called "punitive damages."
It's essential to note that courts in Mobile, Alabama prefer not to grant punitive damages. This is because the civil justice system is designed mainly to compensate the victims of wrongdoing. Nonetheless, there are some cases where the defendant's conduct was so immoral and evil that civil courts have an interest in making them pay further damages, going above and beyond what's needed to compensate the victim, in order to serve as a deterrent.
Conduct that can give rise to punitive damages in Mobile, Alabama
The vast majority of personal injury lawsuits in Mobile, Alabama involve cases in which the defendant did not intend to harm the plaintiff, but did so through carelessness. This is not enough to award punitive damages in Mobile, Alabama.
In Mobile, Alabama, punitive damages are only awarded in extreme cases. Civil wrongs such as fraud, conversion (theft), battery, and other intentional, depraved acts are sufficient to award punitive damages. In deciding whether or not to award punitive damages, and how much money to award, courts in Mobile, Alabama will consider many different factors. Typically, they employ a sliding scale, weighing the nature of the conduct and the actual harm that the conduct caused. The more immoral the conduct, and/or the more harm caused, the more likely a court is to award punitive damages.
It's essential to note that in Mobile, Alabama, punitive damages are not unlimited. The Supreme Court has repeatedly held that punitive damages cannot be hugely disproportionate to the amount awarded to compensate the plaintiff for the actual injuries they suffered. If the punitive damages are extremely excessive, an appeals court might rule that they amount to a deprivation of property without due process of law, or a de facto criminal punishment, without affording the defendant the protections available in criminal cases.
In Mobile, Alabama, punitive damage awards are normally (but not always) capped at 10 times the amount awarded in compensatory damages. Remember, however, that this is just a basic rule of thumb, and is not completely rigid. In Alabama, appeals courts have a good deal of discretion in deciding if a punitive damage award is valid or invalid. Much larger awards have been upheld, and smaller awards have been overturned. The validity of a specific punitive damage award will depend heavily on the facts of each case.
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In Mobile, Alabama, there are a basically unlimited number of situtations in which punitive damages can be awarded.
If you are engaged in a case in Mobile, Alabama that you believe might entitle you to punitive damages, a lot of money could be at stake. Thus, if you want to pursue your legal remedies, you should see a Mobile, Alabama civil litigation attorney as soon as possible.
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Life in MobileMobile is unsurprisingly the seat of Mobile County. You may not know, however, that Mobile is the largest municipality on the Gulf Coast between New Orleans and St. Petersburg, Florida. In fact, over 400,000 residents live in Mobile, which was the first state capital of Louisiana. Mobile is also famous for being a Gulf Coast cultural hub. the city boasts the oldest organized celebrations like Carnival and Mardi Gras.
Tourism plays a major role in the Mobile economy. At Battleship Memorial park you can tour the USS Alabama battleship from WWII and Korean War submarine the USS Drum. The Mobile Carnival Museum offers Mardi Gras history and memorabilia like floats and costumes. A number of historic antebellum house museums like the Bragg-Mitchell Mansion from 1855 can be found in Mobile as well. A few of the other exciting attractions to which tourists flock consist of the Gulf Coast Exploratoreum, Dauphin Island Sea Lab, and Mobile Botanical Gardens that earn the city's nickname the "Azalea City."
Mobile is known nationally as a hub for business. Mobile industries include steel fabrication and building, aerospace, retail, medicine, manufacturing and transportation. The Alabama State Docks recently underwent a $300 million expansion project that provided new jobs. Additionally, Mobile's Austal USA shipbuilding company will be trusted with constructing U.S. Forces vessels after winning another multi-billion dollar defense contract with the United States Government in late 2010.