punitive damages

plural noun

Definition of punitive damages

: damages awarded in excess of compensation to the plaintiff to punish a defendant for a serious wrong

Examples of punitive damages in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Missouri law requires defendants to give half of punitive damages awarded to the state’s Tort Crime Victim’s Compensation Fund. chicagotribune.com, "Lawyers for St. Louis County fighting $20 million verdict with argument: It’s legal to discriminate against gays," 26 Nov. 2019 The trial against Gore ended Tuesday with jurors finding in favor of nearly half of the 21 plaintiffs, awarding $8 million in compensatory damages and $50 million in punitive damages. Fox News, "Arizona jury rules for nearly half of plaintiffs against 'human chop shop'," 20 Nov. 2019 The jury awarded $8 million in compensatory damages and $50 million in punitive damages. BostonGlobe.com, "PHOENIX — The owner of a now-closed body donation facility was found civilly liable Tuesday for mishandling remains in about half of 21 cases filed by families of the dead.," 20 Nov. 2019 On Friday, Caprio’s spouse was awarded a $157.4 million verdict from a Broward jury, $9 million in compensatory damages and the rest in punitive damages. Rafael Olmeda, sun-sentinel.com, "Gay spouse of deceased smoker wins $157.4 million from Big Tobacco," 19 Nov. 2019 The jury awarded Planned Parenthood punitive damages of $870,000. Fox News, "Jury awards Planned Parenthood nearly $1M over secret videos by pro-life group," 16 Nov. 2019 Jurors awarded Planned Parenthood more than $500,000 as compensation for the intrusions and $870,000 in punitive damages. Bob Egelko, SFChronicle.com, "Planned Parenthood wins $2.2 million verdict against anti-abortion activists," 15 Nov. 2019 Instead of fining him that amount, as the attorney general's office wanted, the judge trimmed it to $2 million and rejected a demand for punitive damages and interest. chicagotribune.com, "President Donald Trump ordered to pay $2 million to settle suit alleging misuse of charitable foundation for personal gain," 7 Nov. 2019 Davitt sought punitive damages of $250,000 from Lee, the record says. Perry Vandell, azcentral, "Records: Inmate filed sexual misconduct complaint against officer before fatal attack," 1 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'punitive damages.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of punitive damages

1858, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for punitive damages

Time Traveler

The first known use of punitive damages was in 1858

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Statistics for punitive damages

Last Updated

5 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Punitive damages.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/punitive%20damages. Accessed 13 December 2019.

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More Definitions for punitive damages

punitive damages

Legal Definition of punitive damages

see damage sense 2

Comments on punitive damages

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easily led, controlled, or managed

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