Damages Defined: Compensatory and Actual

The tort law definition of damages is “a form of monetary compensation to the injured party.” There are different types of damages and more than one may apply to your case.

Compensatory damages are awarded to compensate the injured party for injury or loss. The amount of these damages is based on the actual harm suffered by the plaintiff.  Actual damages are synonymous with compensatory damages.

In some cases, a plaintiff will be awarded “Treble damages.” In this scenario, the jury determines the amount of the actual damages and the court must award three times that amount.

Compensatory damages are awarded before Punitive damages are considered. Learn more about Punitive damages.