Suing for Punitive Damages in Pawtucket

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Litigation Lawyers in Pawtucket

In Pawtucket, Rhode Island, civil litigation is not meant to punish wrongdoers, at least that is not its main purpose. Instead, it is designed to ensure that the victims of wrongdoing are given compensation for the harm they've suffered.

Nonetheless, this general principle has a major exception. In rare cases, a Pawtucket, Rhode Island judge or jury can award damages to the plaintiff that are not calculated by the actual losses sustained. Instead, they serve the purpose of punishing the defendant, and deterring others from wrongdoing. These are called "punitive damages."

You should be cognizant that courts in Pawtucket, Rhode Island are not especially fond of authorizing 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 Pawtucket, Rhode Island

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

In Pawtucket, Rhode Island, 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 Pawtucket, Rhode Island 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.

There are limits on punitive damages in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. 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.

A good rule of thumb for calculating the upper limit of punitive damages in Pawtucket, Rhode Island is that punitive damages can be no larger than compensatory damages times ten. This rule is not absolute, of course. Courts in Rhode Island have a good deal of discretion in awarding punitive damages, and will decide them based on the facts of each case. Because of this, punitive damage awards larger than 10 times compensatory damages are occasionally upheld, while much smaller awards have been overturned, because they were deemed excessive in a certain case.

How Can a Pawtucket, Rhode Island Attorney Help?

Pawtucket, Rhode Island's courts have wide discretion in awarding punitive damages. Therefore, it is impractical to comprehensively discuss all the situations in which punitive damages can arise.

If you are located in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, 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 Pawtucket, Rhode Island civil litigation attorney

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Life in Pawtucket

Pawtucket is a city in Providence County, Rhode Island. It is the state's fourth largest city, with an approximate population of 71,200 people

Some popular attractions include Marconi Garden, Daggett House, Water Color Gallery, Daggett Farm, State Memorial Park,

Pawtucket has been in the media--believe it or not! In 1996, the film American Buffalo was filmed there. It has also been talked about in the popular cartoon Family Guy! Pawtucket has also had minor references in the films Outside Providence, Mermaids, and NBC sitcom "Nurses."

There are many attorneys who practice in Pawtucket. These attorneys practice in various areas providing security to local businesses and residents that their legal needs can be easily handled.

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