Suing for Punitive Damages in Hyattsville

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Litigation Lawyers in Hyattsville

In Hyattsville, 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 Hyattsville, 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 Hyattsville, 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 Hyattsville, Maryland

The vast majority of personal injury lawsuits in Hyattsville, Maryland involve situations 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 Hyattsville, Maryland.

Punitive damages in Hyattsville, Maryland are not granted 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 Hyattsville, Maryland 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.

It's critical to note that in Hyattsville, 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.

In Hyattsville, Maryland, 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 general rule of thumb, and is not completely rigid. In Maryland, 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 particular punitive damage award will depend heavily on the facts of each case.

How Can a Hyattsville, Maryland Attorney Help?

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

If you live in Hyattsville, Maryland and are involved in a case that you believe carries the possibility of a punitive damage award, you may be entitled to a large amount of money from the person or company that injured you. To know for sure, you should speak with a civil litigation attorney in Hyattsville, Maryland.

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Life in Hyattsville

Named after Christopher Clarke Hyatt in 1860, Hyattsville, Maryland is home to close to 15,000 residents.Hyatsville provides its population with easy access to both Washington and Baltmiore, Hyattsville is located in Prince George's County, Maryland.

The small population does not mean that there are a lack of good lawyers in Hyattsville. Raning from family law to employment issues, to everyday legal issues, Hyattsville lawyers are skilled in a range legal areas ready to help their neighbors with whatever he or she may find themselves facing. Hyattsville also has friendly neighborhoods, top schools, and an active population contributing to the overall charm of the East Coast city.

A portion of the city of Hyattsville was placed on the National Registry ofHistoric Placesfor the many beautiful historic sites the city has to offer. Hyattsville is also home to a variety of industries including: manufacturing, retail, and real estate. There are also many summer attractions including outdoor summer concerts, outdoor movies showing classics, and many well-kept neighborhood parks putting on activities. Hyattsville is a city that has perfected the small-town charm in a big way.

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