DEFINITION of 'Treble Damages'

A law that permits a court to triple the amount of damages awarded in cases where the defendant willfully acted in a prohibited way. Usually a court will require substantial evidence proving that the defendant's actions were willful in nature or done in bad faith before treble damages are awarded.

BREAKING DOWN 'Treble Damages'

In the corporate world treble damages often arise in regard to patent infringement, willful counterfeiting and antitrust lawsuits. Damages are calculated against the financial loss incurred by the plaintiff directly resulting from the actions of the defendant.

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