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Personal injury cases can be complicated because you will have to prove that your accident was a result of negligence. Some cases are even more complex when the injury was a result of egregious behavior, meaning that plaintiffs must prove the defendant acted with complete disregard for their health or safety. In these cases, the offender may have to pay additional damages as a punishment. These damages are supposed to deter an offender from engaging in this behavior in the future. This is referred to as punitive damages. Read on to learn more about recovering punitive damages in New York.

What Are Punitive Damages?

If you are injured due to another party’s negligence, you may be awarded compensation. This compensation would help relieve some of the burdens you are facing. For example, an injury often leads to lost wages, unemployment, and missed opportunities. Hospital bills can also become overwhelming. Additionally, an injury can affect you physically and mentally. You may be awarded damages for things like pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life. But, you may also be awarded punitive damages. Punitive damages are not awarded to help the injured individual, but rather to punish the party responsible for the injury.

How Can I Recover Punitive Damages?

Punitive damages can be difficult to recover because you must prove ill-intent in addition to just negligence. For example, an individual may be considered negligent if he or she fails to clean his property of ice after rainfall and someone slips and falls. Generally, in this case, the guilty party will not have to pay punitive damages. An example in which punitive damages may be awarded includes when someone is injured by a drunk driver. In this case, the driver got behind the wheel knowing that he or she may cause serious harm. In a case like this, you will need a dedicated personal injury attorney to fight for you.

If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident that was the result of more than just negligence, contact our firm today to discuss your case. We want to help make sure you are awarded the compensation you need and deserve to live a happy and healthy life.

Contact our Firm

If you have been injured in a New York City accident, Swerling Law is here to help. Our firm understands the challenges that many people face after being hurt in an accident and is prepared to help you receive an award of significant compensation to ease some of your burdens. To schedule a consultation with an experienced construction site accident attorney in New York City, contact Swerling Law today.


Settlement to a barista who slipped and fell on a defective stairwell while working for Starbucks who sustained back injuries requiring multiple surgeries in 2012.


Settlement to a woman who was assaulted and sustained back/hip injuries in 2015.


Verdict to a high school student who was assaulted by a school dean during her lunch period dislocating her hip in 2014.


Settlement to a man who was run over by a dump truck on a Brooklyn street causing him to sustain multiple injuries, including but not limited to a broken leg and detached urethra in 2019.


Settlement to a woman who slipped and fell down a wet stairwell in a New York City Housing Authority building requiring a back surgery in 2018.

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