A jury award of $30 million in punitive damages that was slashed to $2 million by a trial judge has been slashed again, to $750,000, by the 3rd Circuit on the grounds that a punitive award 18 times greater than the compensatory damages is unconstitutionally excessive. Third Circuit Judge Kent A. Jordan focused on two "guideposts" that the U.S. Supreme Court has instructed judges to consider when asked to reduce a punitive award: "degree of reprehensibility" and "disparity between the harm and the award."
3rd Circuit Slashes Punitive Damages Award
The Legal Intelligencer
August 27, 2007
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