What are Punitive Damages?
They are Additional to other Damages
Punitive damages are additional to the compensatory damages a judge or a jury may grant a plaintiff. Special damages are designed to replace “out-ofpocket” costs to the plaintiff. General damages are designed to compensate for the more ephemeral losses—such as pain and suffering; loss of consortium; or loss of care, love, and affection—to the plaintiff. Punitive damages are awarded to punish and make an example of the defendant.
Punitive Damages cannot be Insured
Generally, compensatory damages are paid for by an insurance company. Common law and many state laws or regulations prohibited insurance companies from insuring or paying punitive damages. Punitive damages must be paid for by the party against whom they are assessed.
Punitive Damages are Quasi-Criminal Assessments
Punitive damages ...