Damage per se Law and Legal Definition

Damage per se is one wherein damages are presumed upon occurrence of the tort. For instance, in cases of libel, where the libel concerns imputation of crime, a loathsome disease, or words affecting the plaintiffs trade, business or profession are damage per se. However, per se damages may be able to be rebutted by the defendant who will then bear the burden of proof for his/her affirmative defense.