Suing for Punitive Damages in Rock Hill

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Litigation Lawyers in Rock Hill

In Rock Hill, South Carolina, civil litigation is not meant to punish wrongdoers, at least that is not its primary purpose. Instead, it is designed to ensure that the victims of wrongdoing are given compensation for the harm they've suffered.

There is a major exception to this rule, however. In limited situations, courts in Rock Hill, South Carolina will order a defendant to pay the plaintiff damages which are not directly tied to any harm suffered by the plaintiff. Rather, these damages, which are known as "punitive damages", are meant to punish the wrongdoer, and serve as a deterrent.

Punitive Damages in Rock Hill, South Carolina are not awarded lightly, because the civil justice system typically 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 Rock Hill, South Carolina

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

In Rock Hill, South Carolina, 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 Rock Hill, South Carolina 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 know that punitive damages in Rock Hill, South Carolina 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.

Typically, in Rock Hill, South Carolina, 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 South Carolina have found much smaller awards to be invalid, and upheld much larger awards.

How Can a Rock Hill, South Carolina Attorney Help?

In Rock Hill, South Carolina, there are a large number of cases in which punitive damages are appropriate, because the decision to grant punitive damages is largely up to the discretion of the jury.

If you are immersed in a case in Rock Hill, South Carolina 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 Rock Hill, South Carolina

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Life in Rock Hill

Rock Hill is the fourth largest city in South Carolina but is the largest in York County. Rock Hill is popular among locals and tourists. It's position in the far North of the state earned it the nickname "the gateway to South Carolina" but the motto remains "Shop here. Stay here. Dine here." Rock Hill is so attractive that almost 100,000 residents call the city home. It's just 25 miles south of Charlotte.

Rock Hill is very popular among Charlotte professionals because it provides a more suburban setting that is great for families. The Rock Hill School District is one of the best in the State of South Carolina. In fact, the city of rock Hill is a three time winner of the America's Promise Alliance 100 Best Communities for Young People and a two time winner of the All-American City Award.

Twenty-seven public schools serve Rock Hill and there are also private institutions located within Rock Hill like St. Anne's Catholic. Winthrop University, a four year university, Clinton junior College, a two-year institution founded by the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, are both inside Rock Hill City limits and together enroll 15,000 each year.

Many of the residents and locals of Rock Hill frequent the Rock Hill Galleria Mall and seasonal events like the Cone-See-Me that was voted number one South Carolina Festival.

Rock Hill is home to notables like Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Jim Hoagland, children's author Matt Christopher, country music singer David Ball, and Tony Award winning costume designer William Ivey Long. Rock Hill also plays host to lawyers who are familiar with practicing in local courts. Rock Hill lawyers can help you with a wide variety of legal circumstances including divorce, real estate, immigration, personal injury and wrongful termination cases.

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