Money that a defendant pays a plaintiff in a civil case if the plaintiff has won. Damages may be compensatory (for loss or injury) or punitive (to punish and deter future misconduct).
Source: U.S. Courts
Money that the losing side must pay to the winning side to make up for losses or injuries. There are two kinds of damages: (1) "compensatory," meaning money to pay for the actual cost of an injury or loss; and (2)"punitive" or "exemplary," meaning an amount of money that s more than the actual damages. This is a punishment for willful or malicious acts.
Source: California Courts.