Definition - What does Legal Damages mean?
Legal damages are monetary payments that are given to a wronged individual or party by the wrongdoer. Damages are designed to compensate for or offset any loss that may have occurred by the conduct of the party at fault. An amount in damages can be limited by courts and also by the type of lawsuit. For instance, punitive damages can be higher than actual damages, but in most places, they would be capped at a maximum penalty amount. Damages can be paid to the aggrieved party, to the court, or to both. In some places, payments are made to a poor box or a designated charity that will receive the benefit of the damages.
Justipedia explains Legal Damages
Between courts, the amount paid in damages is often limited by the court itself. In a civil court, the damages are limited to $5,000. The district court is the next level of court, and a case will automatically be tried in the district court if the amount being sought is over the $5,000 limit. Criminal court cases do not have punitive damage awards, and in order to gain an award for damages in a case that is tried in criminal court, another hearing is held in a lower court. If the defendant was found guilty of an action in one court, then an order for damages in another court will be withheld.