Yesterday , I wrote about punitive damages . Today , The Nashville Tennessean reported a truck driver plead guilty to reckless homicide for causing a fiery truck wreck on Interstate 24 that killed a career soldier and his daughter . This is one example of why punitive damages are important . The courts have provided clear defintions for the elements of punitive damages .
Intentional means conscious objective or desire to engage in conduct or cause the result . Fraudulently means the defendant intentionlly misrepresents an existing material fact for the purpose of misleading or obtaining an advantage .Maliciously means the defendant is motivated by ill will , hatred , or personal spite . Recklessly means the defendant is aware of , but disregards a substantially and unjustifiable risk constituing a gross deviation from the standard of care . These are the different elements one has to prove for punitive damages . Recklessly is the one most common in tractor trailer accidents .