Suing for Punitive Damages in Elmont

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Litigation Lawyers in Elmont

The civil litigation system in Elmont, New York is designed to provide compensation for individuals who are injured because of the unlawful conduct of others. It is not much concerned with punishing or deterring wrongdoers.

This general principle is subject to an important exception, however. There are cases where a judge in Elmont, New York 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.

You should be aware that courts in Elmont, New York are not particularly fond of granting punitive damages, because they view it as a financial windfall that generally runs counter to civil litigation's primary purpose of compensating victims of wrongdoing for the harm they've suffered. However, if the conduct of the defendant was completely reprehensible and the harm caused was deliberate, a court might impose damages to punish the defendant, known as "punitive damages."

Conduct that can give rise to punitive damages in Elmont, New York

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

Punitive damages in Elmont, New York are only awarded in the most extreme cases. Fraud, theft, assault, battery, and other intentional, immoral acts are grounds for punitive damages. Elmont, New York courts will consider many factors in considering whether or not to award punitive damages. For example, the court might employ a sliding scale that weighs the immorality of the defendant's actions against the actual harm that it caused to the plaintiff, and calculate damages accordingly.

It's critical to know that punitive damages in Elmont, New York 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.

Punitive damages in Elmont, New York normally cannot exceed 10 times the amount of actual damages suffered by the plaintiff. However, this is just a guideline, and not a strict rule. Courts in New York have found larger punitive damage awards to be perfectly valid, and smaller ones to be invalid. This will be highly dependent on the facts of each case.

How Can a Elmont, New York Attorney Help?

Elmont, New York'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 located in Elmont, New York, 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 an Elmont, New York civil litigation attorney

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Life in Elmont

Elmont, New York is an unincorporated community Nassau County, New York. It is a suburb and bedroom community (a community that is almost entirely residential, populated in large part by people who commute to a nearby, larger, city for their jobs) of New York City. Its population is estimated at about 33,000. The community now known as Elmont can trace its roots back to a land purchase in 1650. Dutch colonists established New Amsterdam in the region, and the colony was eventually transferred to the English, who renamed it "New York." In 1905, the Elmont became home to the Belmont Race Track, which is a major venue for horse racing, and hosts one of the legs of the Triple Crown. During the economic boom following WWII, attractive suburban tract homes began springing up in Elmont, which is largely how it adopted its current role as a residential suburb of New York City. Modernly, Elmont, New York is an extremely diverse city, with roughly equal parts of its population (about 40% each) being African-American and white. It also has significant concentrations of several other ethnicities and cultures, reflecting the diversity of New York, and the U.S. as a whole. Elmont, New York attorneys are numerous, and the selection of attorneys in the greater New York City area is practically unlimited. If you're facing a legal issue, it's very like that an Elmont, New York lawyer can help.

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