The Model Punitive Damages Act was promulgated by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Law (NCCUSL) in 1996. This act provides states with improved procedures for awarding punitive damages, including standards of proof, procedures to control unreasonable awards, and careful court review of punitive damage awards. However, the act does not provide for an explicit cap on punitive damages. The act tightens up the procedures by which punitive damages are awarded and reviewed, while at the same time leaving juries broad discretion to punish wrongdoers.
The act allows the trier of fact to award punitive damages only if there is clear and convincing evidence that the defendant maliciously intended to cause the injury or exhibited a conscious and flagrant disregard of others in causing the injury. It provides nine factors to be considered in determining a punitive award, such as the defendant's financial condition and any adverse effect of the award on innocent persons. It further requires a party seeking appellate review of a punitive damage award to first request review by the trial court. It also requires a court, upon request, to hold separate trials on punitive damages if evidence, such as the financial condition of a party, would be admissible only to assess the amount of the punitive award.
The act has not been adopted by any of the U.S. states.