Suing for Punitive Damages in Pembroke Pines

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Litigation Lawyers in Pembroke Pines

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

This general principle is subject to an important exception, however. There are cases where a judge in Pembroke Pines, Florida will order a defendant to pay the plaintiff a sum of money which is not calculated based on actual harm the plaintiff has suffered. These are called "punitive damages" and serve the purpose of punishing and deterring wrongdoing.

Courts in Pembroke Pines, Florida do not grant punitive damages in most cases. The civil litigation system is geared against granting financial windfalls to civil plaintiffs. But, there are rare cases, where the defendant has done something to the plaintiff that is so morally reprehensible, that society's interest in punishing the defendant and deterring similar misconduct outweighs the civil justice system's preference against punitive damages.

Conduct that can give rise to punitive damages in Pembroke Pines, Florida

Generally personal injury cases in Pembroke Pines, Florida involve injuries that the defendant did not intend to cause, but was still at fault in causing them (through negligence, for example). In Pembroke Pines, Florida, this is not enough to justify the award of punitive damages.

In Pembroke Pines, Florida, punitive damages are not awarded in most cases. They are usually only awarded when the defendant's behavior was so reckless or deplorable that punishment of the defendant is warranted. Acts such as battery, fraud, and defamation (in some cases) are usually considered sufficient in Pembroke Pines, Florida to justify punitive damages. In deciding whether to award punitive damages, and how much to award, the two most important factors the court looks at will be the level of immorality of the act, as well as the actual harm that the plaintiff suffered as a result of the defendant's conduct.

It's crucial to know that punitive damages in Pembroke Pines, Florida are subject to limits. The Supreme Court of the United States has held, more than once, that punitive damages can't be grossly disproportionate to the actual harm suffered by the plaintiff. Grossly excessive punitive damage awards are unconstitutional, the Supreme Court has held, because they amount to the government taking property from the defendant without due process of law.

Typically, in Pembroke Pines, Florida, punitive damage awards that exceed the actual damages (those awarded to directly compensate the plaintiff) by a factor of 10. This is not an absolute rule, however, and is applied on a case-by-case basis. Courts in Florida have found much smaller awards to be invalid, and upheld much larger awards.

How Can a Pembroke Pines, Florida Attorney Help?

In Pembroke Pines, Florida, judges and juries have a good deal of leeway in deciding if they want to grant punitive damages, so there are a nearly-unlimited number of situations that can lead to a punitive damage award.

If you are immersed in a case in Pembroke Pines, Florida where punitive damages are a possibility, a very large amount of money could be at stake, whether you are the plaintiff or defendant. You should not hesitate to speak with a civil litigation attorney in Pembroke Pines, Florida

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Life in Pembroke Pines

Pembroke Pines is the 157th largest city in the United States and still manages to win "All America City Awards" and outstanding achievement in the Civil Livability Awards Program. The 150,000 residents of Pembroke Pines are also within the limits of Broward County that has won the Five Star School Award from the Florida department of Education. The schools were recognized for outstanding community involvement exemplifying the city's motto: "Join us and progress with us." Pembroke Pines was originally incorporated in 1960 and was named for the nearby road, Pembroke Road. The convenient location along the Florida Turnpike makes it a great place for commerce. In addition to an airport and the Broward Correctional Institution, Pembroke Pines also plays host to some of the best shopping in all of Broward County and maybe even the state. There are a number of shopping centers, malls, and outlet stores nearby. Many celebrities and sports stars call Pembroke Pines home. Baseball players Manny Ramirez, Jeff Fiorentino, Mike Napoli, and Miami Dolphins wide receiver Kendall Newson all call Pembroke Pines home. Demographically, Pembroke Pines is very diverse. Many lawyers are residents of Pembroke Pines and are familiar with local legal issues and procedures. Pembroke Pines lawyers are knowledgeable of the Florida State Judicial System and will be able to help you figure out your options and fight for you.

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