Elections | Initiatives - 10 Punitive Damages


SPONSOR: Thomas Slough, P.O. Box 13987, Jackson, MS 39236-3987; 601-352-7867

SUBJECT MATTER: Punitive Damages

BALLOT TITLE: Should the Mississippi Constitution limit punitive damages awards to $250,000.00 or five times the economic damages, whichever is greater?

BALLOT SUMMARY: Passage of this amendment would: limit the amount of punitive damages that may be awarded in a case to the greater of $250,000.00 or five times the economic damages; require actual malice, gross negligence or actual fraud be proven beyond a reasonable doubt; prohibit punitive damages awards where the activity or product causing the economic damages was in compliance with federal or state regulatory laws; and, establish certain procedures therefor.

ORIGINAL FILING: April 24, 1998

STATUS: Expired

Initiative Information

The official ballot title and ballot summary for an initiative measure are prepared by the Mississippi Attorney General's Office. Initiative petitions are valid for one year. According to Mississippi law, for an initiative petition to be sufficient a minimum of 91,673 certified signatures must be gathered; with at least 18,355 certified signatures from each of the five congressional districts. The number of signatures required represents 12% of the total number of votes cast for Governor in the last gubernatorial general election. All signatures on the petition must be certified by county Circuit Clerks as those of registered Mississippi voters.

For more information on the initiative process in Mississippi, consult the Mississippi Constitution of 1890, Section 273; and Miss. Code Ann., Sections 23-17-1 through 23-17-61 (1972).