Q: What are punitive damages in a Georgia injury claim?
A:When a person acts in a malicious or particularly careless manner that results in personal injury, punitive damages may be awarded. These damages are not designed to compensate the victim for his or her financial losses; rather, they are used to punish the defendant and to deter others from acting in a similar manner. For punitive damages to be awarded, your Atlanta personal injury will need to prepare a strong case that will sway a judge or jury.
Punitive damages are not awarded in every personal injury case. In order to request these types of damages, it must be proven that the defendant’s behavior was especially heinous; simple negligence may not lead to punitive damages. Some states have added a cap to the amount of punitive damages that may be awarded to avoid excessive settlements.
To determine the amount of punitive damages, the court will take into account the amount of compensatory damages, which includes medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Depending on the severity of the defendant’s offense, the court could award the victim anywhere from 1 to 10 times the amount of compensatory damages.
If you are interested in seeking punitive damages from the defendant, an Atlanta personal injury attorney can help. Your attorney can gather evidence of the defendant’s actions to prove that punishment is warranted. He or she also can help you determine the amount of compensatory damages for which you are eligible.
Contacting an Atlanta Personal Injury Attorney
Dealing with a personal injury lawsuit can be very difficult, especially when punitive damages are involved. The Law Office of Jason Schultz is dedicated to helping personal injury victims receive compensation for their injuries. For a free consultation on your case, please call 1-404-474-0804 today.