Multiple Damages – statutory damages that are a multiple of the amount that the fact-finder determines to be owed

multiple damages:

1. Statutory damages (such as double or treble damages) that are a multiple of the amount that the fact-finder determines to be owed. — aka multiplied damages. [1]

     Excerpt from Dan B. Dobbs’ Law of Remedies (2d ed. 1993):

     “[T]he statutory multiple damages differ from the common law punitive damages in that punitive damages involved no fixed sum or limit. The fixed limit of multiple damages not only reduces their threat to the defendant and the potential for abuse, it also reduces the possibility of a measured deterrence. Likewise, because the enhancement of the award is fixed by the statutory multiple, there is no occasion for introducing evidence of the defendant’s wealth as there is in the case of common law punitive damages . .. . . Perhaps a more important distinction is that multiple damages statutes may be enacted for entirely non-punitive purposes. Specifically, some double or treble damages statutes, and also specified ‘civil penalties,’ are intended to provide a kind of liquidated damages for actual losses that cannot be proved or that are otherwise unrecognized by the law. [2]


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[1]: Black’s Law Dictionary Deluxe Tenth Edition by Henry Campbell Black, Editor in Chief Bryan A. Garner. ISBN: 978-0-314-61300-4

[2]: 1 Dan B. Dobbs, Law of Remedies § 3.12, at 543 (2d ed. 1993)



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