Suing for Punitive Damages in Palmdale

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Litigation Lawyers in Palmdale

In Palmdale, California, the civil litigation system is primarily concerned with compensating the victims of wrongdoing, rather than punishing the wrongdoers, or casting moral blame upon them.

There is a major exception to this rule, however. In limited situations, courts in Palmdale, California will order a defendant to pay the plaintiff damages which are not directly tied to any harm suffered by the plaintiff. Rather, these damages, which are known as "punitive damages", are meant to punish the wrongdoer, and serve as a deterrent.

It's critical to note that courts in Palmdale, California prefer not to grant punitive damages. This is because the civil justice system is designed primarily to compensate the victims of wrongdoing. However, there are some cases where the defendant's conduct was so immoral and evil that civil courts have an interest in making them pay additional 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 Palmdale, California

The vast majority of personal injury lawsuits in Palmdale, California involve instances 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 Palmdale, California.

Punitive damages in Palmdale, California are not granted in many cases. They are only awarded when the defendant's actions was so deplorable and deliberate (but not necessarily criminal) that punishment is warranted. Fraud, battery, conversion (theft) and other intentional, insidious acts are usually required before punitive damages in Palmdale, California will be considered. Additionally, in deciding how much to award in punitive damages, a court will consider 2 main factors: the insidious nature of the defendant's conduct, and the actual harm that the plaintiff suffered as a result.

You should be aware of the fact that there are some pretty severe limits on punitive damages in Palmdale, California. The U.S. Supreme Court has found that there are constitutional limits on punitive damage awards. Punitive damages can't be too disproportionate to the actual damages that the plaintiff has suffered. Appeals courts have found that excessive punitive damage awards violate the defendant's right to due process, by depriving them of massive amounts of property.

In general, punitive damages in Palmdale, California cannot be more than 10 times larger than the actual damages suffered by the plaintiff. However, this is not an absolute rule, and appeals courts in California have upheld much larger awards, and found much smaller awards to be invalid. It's determined on a case-by-case basis.

How Can a Palmdale, California Attorney Help?

Palmdale, California's courts have wide discretion in awarding punitive damages. Accordingly, it is impractical to comprehensively discuss all the situations in which punitive damages can arise.

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

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Life in Palmdale

Palmdale, California is a thriving and expanding city with a population of about 153,000 people. It is situated in the northern area of Los Angeles, California. Palmdale is locally known as a commuter and family-oriented community, and boasts a high quality of life due to revitalization projects. The city is nicknamed the "Aerospace capital of the U.S.", on account of the many aerospace companies that are active there.

In particular, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman (both aerospace companies) are the largest employers in Palmdale, California. Many other types of manufacturing companies have relocated to the city due to special zoning laws for businesses. Special economic zones in Palmdale offer state and federal tax breaks to businesses that relocate to the city.

Palmdale, California is also home to many local sites of interest. For example, Antelope Valley Mall is located in the city and houses a shopping space of over 1 million square feet. The Palmdale Amphitheater seats 10,000 people and is the site for the summer event, "Starlight Concert Series". Palmdale residents also enjoy visiting the Rancho Vista Golf Course, which is a PGA-class golf facility.

Lawyers in Palmdale, California have experience in a variety of legal matters. Palmdale lawyers are available to address the individual needs of their clients. Palmdale lawyers can also provide assistance with the unique laws that regulate the area.

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