November 8, 2008

Oakland Jury Awards $5.5 Million in Punitive Damages Against Landlord

The San Francisco Chronicle is reporting that a jury in Oakland has awarded $183,000 in compensatory damages and $5.5 million in punitive damages against a landlord who allegedly defrauded tenants out of security deposits. Interestingly, the story quotes the plaintiffs' attorney as conceding that the punitive damages are excessive and should be reduced by the trial judge. The lawyer also says that, after the punitive damages are reduced, she will ask the judge to award the reduced amount to charity, instead of her clients.