Punitive Damages Trials: What is a bifurcated case?
In punitive damage personal injury trials, there is what is called a bifurcated case. This means the trial is split into to phases. As an injury lawyer atlanta, I know this makes the plaintiff’s attorney’s work that much harder. In the first phase of the trial, the plaintiff must prove liability and damages. Meaning, the plaintiff tries the main portion of the case first, that is, defendant caused the injury and to what extent. If the jury finds for the plaintiff on liability in the first phase, then the punitive damage phase of the trial begins where the jury must decide if punitive damages are warranted and to what extent. For these reasons, punitive damage cases can be tricky and very intense.
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