Are punitive damages available in Texas wrongful death lawsuits?

December 21, 2009

Texas is one of the few states that allows punitive damages to be awarded in successful wrongful death lawsuits.

Punitive damages are awarded to a plaintiff as a way of punishing the defendant. They are separate and distinct from compensatory damages which are awarded to compensate the plaintiff for the financial losses they have suffered as a result of the defendant’s conduct.

Note that punitive damages are not available in all Texas wrongful death lawsuits. Punitive damages can only be awarded in cases where the defendant’s behavior was reckless, malicious or intentional.

Even in cases where this criteria is met, however, punitive damages are not automatic. Rather, they are awarded at the discretion of the jury.

If you have lost a loved one in an accident, contact the Texas wrongful death lawyers of Fears | Nachawati today. To receive free legal assistance, simply email us or phone us toll free at 1.866.705.7584.

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