STATE FARM MUT. AUTOMOBILE INS. CO.V. CAMPBELL http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/01-1289.ZS.htmlHeld: A punitive damages award of $145 million, where full compensatory damages are $1 million, is excessive and violates the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Pp. 5—19. (a) Compensatory damages are intended to redress a plaintiff’s concrete loss, while punitive damages are aimed at the different purposes of deterrence and retribution. The Due Process Clause prohibits the imposition of grossly excessive or arbitrary punishments on a tortfeaser. E.g., Cooper Industries, Inc. v. Leatherman Tool Group, Inc., 532 U.S. 424, 433. Punitive damages awards serve the same purpose as criminal penalties.
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