What Are Punitive Damages in New York?

While most personal injury victims in the state of New York will be eligible to receive economic and non-economic damages, only a select handful will be eligible to receive punitive damages.

Punitive damages, which go above and beyond compensation awarded for losses and injuries, are meant to punish a defendant for his or her perceived negligence or wrongdoing. For more information on punitive damages in New York personal injury cases, keep reading.

A Look at Punitive Damages

Recipients of punitive damages have a high legal bar to clear, as New York courts have said that defendants must have shown “conscious disregard of the rights of others,” demonstrated “gross negligence, recklessness, or wantonness,” or displayed an intent to injure.

There is no cap on the amount of punitive damages that may be awarded in New York, but that doesn’t mean you should expect more compensation than you know what to do with. Generally, the punitive damages awarded in your case will be based on the amount of economic and non-economic damages you are given.

What Could Influence Your Punitive Damages Award

Your punitive damages award amount is influenced by the amount of economic and non-economic damages you receive, but other important factors will also come into play.

One matter you must consider, for instance, is the degree to which you hold liability for your own losses and injuries. Any plaintiff found partially responsible for his or her own harm will see his or her overall compensation reduced proportionally.

Another important matter to keep in mind is your case’s statute of limitations, which starts from the date of your accident. The statute of limitations for personal injury cases in the state of New York is three years, meaning that suits filed afterward will be tossed.

Consult with a Personal Injury Attorney

If you’ve been seriously hurt in an an accident, it may seem like there are many more questions than answers. The good news is that compensation may be available to aid you in your recovery.

A personal injury attorney at Greenstein & Milbauer, LLP can help you find and fully understand your options, letting you see a glimmer of hope for a brighter tomorrow. Dial 1-800-VICTIM2 (842-8462) or fill out the form at the bottom of the page to request a free, no-obligation case consultation with one of our lawyers.

Start live chat with our team?