I was recently injured in a car accident in Brookings and I keep hearing the term "punitive damages." What are "punitive damages" in South Dakota?

Punitive damages are money awarded on top of compensatory damages. These kinds of damages are rarely awarded, and their purpose is to deter the defendant from similar actions in the future. What counts as an act deserving of punitive damages is often vague and arbitrary, but fraud, bad faith, and an intent to harm usually make the list. For example, a car company that knowingly neglected safety issues in its car’s braking systems could be ordered to pay punitive damages to the family whose son was injured as a result of the faulty brakes.