Suing for Punitive Damages in Dundalk

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Litigation Lawyers in Dundalk

In Dundalk, Maryland, civil litigation serves the primary purpose of compensating people who have been victims of wrongdoing, and not meting out punishment, vengeance, or moral judgment.

This general principle is subject to an important exception, however. There are cases where a judge in Dundalk, Maryland 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 Dundalk, Maryland 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 Dundalk, Maryland

The vast majority of personal injury lawsuits in Dundalk, Maryland 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 Dundalk, Maryland.

In Dundalk, Maryland, 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 Dundalk, Maryland 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 essential to note that in Dundalk, Maryland, 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.

Typically, in Dundalk, Maryland, 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 Maryland have found much smaller awards to be invalid, and upheld much larger awards.

How Can a Dundalk, Maryland Attorney Help?

The law of Dundalk, Maryland doesn't lay out many strict conditions which are required before punitive damages can be granted. Instead, it largely leaves it to the discretion of the courts. So, there are many situations where they might be awarded.

If you are located in Dundalk, Maryland, and are immersed in a case that you think, based on the information conveyed above, that might have punitive damages as an option, you can't be sure what, if anything, you're entitled to from the defendant until you consult with a Dundalk, Maryland civil litigation attorney

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Life in Dundalk

Dundalk, Maryland is a community situated in Baltimore County. It has a population of over 62,000 people. It is a major suburb of Baltimore, and one of the largest unincorporated communities in Maryland.

It is named after the town of Dundalk, Ireland. The name was given to the community by Henry McShane, who established the McShane Bell Foundry in the city, and hailed from Dundalk, Ireland. The McShane Foundry manufactured large church bells, and was one of the first major industrial concerns in the area.

Dundalk, Maryland's general look benefits from the presence of many beautiful historic buildings. Its climate, like the rest of its region, is humid and sub-tropical, which means it has hot and humid summers, but pleasant springs and falls, along with relatively mild winters. Its low elevation and location next to the Chesapeake Bay give it a much milder climate than many nearby areas.

For those who work in or near Baltimore, Dundalk is a good place to live, allowing residents to enjoy the "small town" feel of the local community, while giving them easy access to a major city, and all of the benefits that entails, such as jobs and amenities.

There are many Dundalk, Maryland lawyers who can help you with whatever legal problem you might have. If you are facing any type of legal issue, large or small, a Dundalk, Maryland lawyer can help.

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