Suing for Punitive Damages in Schenectady

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Litigation Lawyers in Schenectady

The civil litigation system in Schenectady, 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.

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

Punitive Damages in Schenectady, New York are not awarded lightly, because the civil justice system usually disfavors giving plaintiffs financial windfalls not directly related to compensating them for their injuries. They are usually only awarded when the conduct of the defendant is morally reprehensible, and far worse than simple carelessness.

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

Personal injury litigation doesn't typically carry with it the possibility of punitive damages in Schenectady, New York, because typically personal injury cases stem from harm that was caused accidentally, not deliberately. Accidental harm is not enough to warrant an award of punitive damages in Schenectady, New York.

Punitive damages in Schenectady, New York are not granted in many cases. They are only awarded when the defendant's behavior 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 Schenectady, New York will be considered. Moreover, 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.

However, in Schenectady, New York, the law places limits on punitive damages. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled many times that punitive damages cannot be grossly disproportionate to the evil nature of the conduct, and the injuries that the defendant suffered. If they are disproportionate, punitive damages might be considered a deprivation of the defendant's right to due process of law.

Punitive damages in Schenectady, New York typically 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 Schenectady, New York Attorney Help?

In Schenectady, New York, 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 cases that can lead to a punitive damage award.

If you are engaged in a case in Schenectady, New York 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 Schenectady, New York

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Life in Schenectady

Schenectady, New York is a city in Schenectady County. It has a population of approximately 61,000 people, making it the ninth-largest city in New York State.

The name is a bit of a mouthful, and was derived from a Mohawk word that roughly translates to "near the pines" or "beyond the pines." It is part of the Albany Metropolitan Area.

The area was first settled by Europeans in 1661, as part of the Dutch colony of New Netherland, which comprised most of what is now the state of New York. In the 19th Century, Schenectady became an important transportation hub, connecting the Hudson River to the Great Lakes. In 1887, Thomas Edison moved Edison Machine Works to the city, and it then became the headquarters of General Electric, founded by Edison,which is now one of the largest companies in the world.

Modernly, Schenectady, New York is coming out of the hard economic times which many cities in Upstate New York endured throughout the second half of the 20th Century, but its economic outlook is improving.

If you live in Schenectady, New York and need an attorney, you probably won't have any problem finding the Schenectady, New York lawyer who is right for you.

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