Suing for Punitive Damages in Evanston

Find the right Litigation attorney in Evanston, IL

Litigation Lawyers in Evanston

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

Of course, there are exceptions to this rule. In Evanston, Illinois, courts will, in fairly rare cases, require defendants to pay plaintiffs sums of money which aren't calculated by the actual harm and costs the plaintiff has incurred. Instead, these "punitive damages," as they are called, are meant to punish and deter wrongdoing.

It's critical to note that courts in Evanston, Illinois 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 Evanston, Illinois

A majority of personal injury litigation actions in Evanston, Illinois do not involve the possibility of punitive damages, because they usually involve injuries where the defendant is at fault for the harm caused, but did not intend to do any harm. In Evanston, Illinois, accidental harm may be enough to award the plaintiff compensatory damages, but it is not enough for punitive damages.

Punitive damages in Evanston, Illinois are not authorized in many cases. They are only awarded when the defendant's conduct 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 Evanston, Illinois will be considered. Furthermore, 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.

There are limits on punitive damages in Evanston, Illinois. The Supreme Court has held that punitive damage awards which are grossly disproportionate to the immorality of the conduct, and the harm that it caused, are an unconstitutional deprivation of property without due process of law.

In Evanston, Illinois, 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 Illinois, 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.

How Can a Evanston, Illinois Attorney Help?

Evanston, Illinois's courts have wide discretion in awarding punitive damages. Therefore, it is impossible to comprehensively discuss all the situations in which punitive damages can arise.

If you are involved in a case in Evanston, Illinois 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 delay to speak with a civil litigation attorney in Evanston, Illinois

Talk to a Law Attorney now!

Life in Evanston

Evanston, Illinois is a municipality in Cook County, Illinois. It is a suburb of Chicago, and its population is estimated at about 75,000 people. Evanston is probably best known as the home of Northwestern University, which is one of the most prestigious undergraduate and graduate schools in the U.S., and home to one of highest-ranked law schools in the U.S. Evanston was officially incorporated in 1863, and grew rapidly during the industrial revolution. The popular building toys known as "Tinkertoys" were invented in Evanston, Illinois. Evanston is one of several cities which claim to be the birthplace of the ice cream sundae, though the veracity this claim, and the claims of other cities, can't be confirmed. Modernly, Northwestern University makes up a significant portion of Evanston's economic activity, from the thousands of people it employs, and the students it brings to the community, who typically spend a lot of money. If you live in the Chicago/Evanston area, and need legal representation, an Evanston, Illinois lawyer would probably be able to meet your legal needs. Evanston's proximity to such a prestigious law school, as well as the huge city right next door, ensures that Evanston, Illinois lawyers must be far more sophisticated than the average small-town attorney.

Clients Rate LegalMatch Attorneys
(click to read reviews)

Howard B.
Howard B.

Business - Litigation

Rye Brook, NY

Mark B.
Mark B.

Business - Litigation

Roseland, NJ

David A.
David A.

Business - Litigation

Walnut Creek, CA

Gotham Light