less than 1 minute read

Inc. v. Gore BMW of North America

Significance, Three "indicums Of Excessiveness", Punitive Damages Running Wild


BMW of North America, Inc.


Dr. Ira Gore, Jr.

Petitioner's Claim

That a $2 million punitive damages award imposed on it by an Alabama jury was grossly excessive, and violated the company's rights to due process under the Fourteenth Amendment.

Chief Lawyers for Petitioner

Michael C. Quillen, Samuel M. Hill

Chief Lawyers for Respondent

Andrew L. Frey, Evan M. Tager

Justices for the Court

Stephen Breyer, Anthony M. Kennedy, Sandra Day O'Connor, David H. Souter, John Paul Stevens (writing for the Court)

Justices Dissenting

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, William H. Rehnquist, Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas


Washington, D.C.

Date of Decision

20 May 1996


That the punitive damages award was grossly excessive, and therefore exceeded the constitutional limit.

Related Cases

  • Pacific Mutual Life Insurance Co. v. Haslip, 499 U.S. 1 (1991).
  • TXO Production Corp. v. Alliance Resources Corp., 509 U.S. 443, 454 (1993).
  • Yates v. BMW of North America, 642 So. 2d 937 (1993).
  • Honda Motor Co. v. Oberg, 512 U.S. 415 (1994).

Further Readings

  • Biskupic, Joan, and Elder Witt, eds. Congressional Quarterly's Guide to the U.S. Supreme Court, 3rd ed. Washington, DC: Congressional Quarterly, Inc., 1996.

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1995 to Present