What Are Punitive Damages?

What Are Punitive Damages?

Damages are essential elements in a personal injury case to help you recover what you lost in an accident. While most personal injury claims focus on compensatory damages, a plaintiff can also get rewarded with punitive damages in some cases. It is imperative to understand what punitive damages are to help you make informed decisions if you get involved in an accident where the defendant was negligent or reckless. 

At LA Century Law, we have experienced Los Angeles personal injury attorneys who can advise you on how to go about the process. Whether you suffered injuries from a car accident, truck accident, dog bites, pedestrian accident, slip and fall, bicycle and motorcycle accidents, we can help.  Contact us today for a free consultation. 

What Are Punitive Damages in California?

Punitive damages are the monetary award to a plaintiff as a form of punishment to the defendant for wrongful behavior that led to the plaintiff’s injuries. These damages are usually meant to deter the defendant and other people from engaging in harmful activities in the future. The plaintiff files a case against the defendant for the intentional and reckless activities with gross negligence that caused the plaintiff’s injuries. 

If you’ve been injured in an accident due to misconduct from another party, we can help. We are an established, dedicated, and determined law firm with experienced lawyers who can investigate your case and determine whether you can receive punitive damages for the injuries you sustained in the accident. Contact us today to speak to our reliable lawyers with an in-depth understanding of Los Angeles personal injury laws concerning punitive damages. 

Why Are Punitive Damages in California Awarded?

There are two main reasons why punitive damages are awarded to the plaintiff, being that a victim has given valid evidence that the accident happened due to negligence or recklessness. Below are the reasons behind punitive damages:

  • To punish the defendant for their behavior that caused the plaintiff’s injuries, thus, decreasing the chances of repeating the same mistake. 
  • Set an example for other people who may cause accidents by behaving in a harmful manner to others.

If you or your loved one got involved in an accident and did not know whether you should pursue punitive damages, we can help. Our experienced lawyers understand Los Angeles laws concerning punitive damages and can advise you accordingly, enabling you to make informed decisions. 

Types of Punitive Damages in California

There are different types of punitive damages that you can recover following an accident caused due to recklessness, negligence, or intentionally by another party. 

Whether you got involved in a car accident, motorcycle accident, pedestrian accident, dog bites, or any other personal injury-related accident, you can receive a settlement for punitive damages if you prove that the accident occurred intentionally. Speak to us today and let us help you determine what kind of punitive damages you can recover based on your case circumstances. 

How Punitive Damages Work in Los Angeles, California

Punitive damages are an addition to the other compensatory damages such as lost wages, lost earning capacity, medical expenses, and pain and suffering. Not all people get punitive damages. 

It is imperative to work with an experienced personal injury attorney like LA Century Law to guide you on how punitive damages work. You will know whether you are entitled to it and how much you can receive.

Do not assume that you do not qualify to receive punitive damages without consulting a personal injury lawyer. Contact us today, and we will be glad to take you through and help you know whether to pursue compensation or not. 

Determining How Much In Punitive Damages You Can Get in California

Many factors determine how much in punitive damages the plaintiff gets. In California, there is no limit to how much one can receive as punitive damages. However, excessive or arbitrary punishments are prohibited. Below are the factors determining how much you can receive: 

  • The judge’s decision after listening to both sides.
  • The overall behavior of the defendant. 
  • The plaintiff’s awarded amount should be appropriate to the defendant’s wealth. 
  • The severity of the injuries, harm, or damage sustained in the accident due to the defendant’s actions.  
  • The relationship between the harm caused by the defendant and the punitive damages that the plaintiff expects.
  • The amount that will punish the defendant and deter them from behaving in the same manner that may cause future harm. 

It may not be easy to handle the judges if you lack legal expertise. A consultation with an experienced Los Angeles injury lawyer is the most helpful way to determine your worth. The lawyer can handle the court case and do all they can to protect your rights. Contact us today and let us evaluate your case for possible punitive damages rewards worth the injuries or damages you incurred in the accident. 

Why Should You Hire a Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney When Seeking A Punitive Damages Settlement?

Handling personal injury cases can be complicated and time-consuming if you lack legal expertise. The process can be even more challenging if you are seeking punitive damages. 

It is not easy to determine how much you should receive. You may also not know the limits. It is essential to work with an experienced Los Angeles personal injury attorney such as LA Century Law to investigate your case and handle the legal proceedings.  

The lawyer can also help you determine whether you’ve met the right criteria for receiving punitive damages. If you are eligible for compensation, the lawyer can communicate with the relevant parties and negotiate your settlement for a favorable deal.

Contact An Experienced Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney Today 

If you are looking to recover punitive damages you incurred in an accident due to another party’s negligence and recklessness, LA Century Law can help. Do not let it go unrecognized if you believe that extreme negligence and recklessness from the other party caused your injuries. Contact us for a free consultation. 

Punitive Damages FAQs

When are punitive damages awarded?

When the plaintiff has already received compensatory damages, the court must rule out that the money awarded is insufficient based on the injuries, harm, or damages you incurred. 

Are punitive damages awarded in every case? 

No. Punitive damages vary depending on the circumstances of your case. They are rare, but you can pursue compensation if you believe your case is valid. 

Who gets the punitive damages?

The money goes to the injured person seeking compensation, also known as the plaintiff.

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