Suing for Punitive Damages in Tucson

Punitive Damages in Tucson, Punitive Damages in  AZ

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In Tucson, Arizona, 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 Tucson, Arizona 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."

You should be cognizant that courts in Tucson, Arizona are not especially fond of authorizing punitive damages, because they view it as a financial windfall that generally runs counter to civil litigation's primary purpose of compensating victims of wrongdoing for the harm they've suffered. However, if the conduct of the defendant was completely reprehensible and the harm caused was deliberate, a court might impose damages to punish the defendant, known as "punitive damages."

Conduct that can give rise to punitive damages in Tucson, Arizona

Personal injury litigation doesn't usually carry with it the possibility of punitive damages in Tucson, Arizona, because mostly personal injury cases stem from harm that was caused accidentally, not deliberately. Accidental harm is not enough to warrant an award of punitive damages in Tucson, Arizona.

In Tucson, Arizona, punitive damages are only awarded in extreme circumstances. 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 Tucson, Arizona will consider many different factors. Usually, 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 important to note that in Tucson, Arizona, 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 Tucson, Arizona, punitive damage awards are typically (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 Arizona, 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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How Can a Tucson, Arizona Attorney Help?

In Tucson, Arizona, there are a basically unlimited number of situtations in which punitive damages can be awarded.

If you are involved in a case in Tucson, Arizona that you believe might entitle you to punitive damages, a lot of money could be at stake. So, if you want to pursue your legal remedies, you should see a Tucson, Arizona civil litigation attorney as soon as possible.

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Life in Tucson

Tucson is a major city in Arizona and the county seat of Pima County.  With a population of about 548,000, it is the second largest city in Arizona after Phoenix.  Tucson is just over 100 miles from Phoenix and about an hour away from the U.S.-Mexico Border.

Often called "The Old Pueblo", Tucson is an attractive mix of traditional southwestern culture and modern innovations.  The downtown area of Tucson has retained much of its historic southwest feel.  Several downtown buildings such as the Hotel Congress and the Art Deco Fox Theater were constructed in the 1920's.  Midtown Tucson also draws many visitors to the city.  For example, the University of Arizona is located in midtown, which includes Arizona Stadium as well as the McKale Center. 

The tourism industry fuels much of Tucson's economy, with some 3.5 million visitors bringing in over $2 billion a year.  Tucson's warm climate attracts many "snowbirds", or winter visitors who often purchase a second home in the city.  Popular events for tourists include the Tucson Gem & Mineral Show and the Tucson Folk Festival.

Lawyers in Tucson, Arizona handle most of their cases at the Tucson City Court.  Tucson lawyers are available to help you understand the many laws that are unique to the state of Arizona. 

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