Civil cases are non-criminal lawsuits that involve private property rights. There are so many kinds of civil lawsuits, such as – breach of contract, negligence, probate, copyright violations, and divorce.
Even though civil lawsuits are non-criminal lawsuits, many criminal acts can lead to civil lawsuits because of its damage to private property, especially the negative effects it can bring to an individual’s financial status.
A person who committed assault and battery will be charged with a criminal case by the government. Besides that he or she may also be sued with a civil lawsuit by the victim. This means the defendant may have to face both civil and criminal lawsuits.
If you are facing both criminal and civil lawsuits, it is always better to consult and hire an attorney. You might even have to hire more than one as you need an expert in criminal cases and you need another for the civil case.
Criminal cases are more focused on the damages done by an individual to the society, while civil lawsuits are damages done to an individual person or a company. Some criminal acts may be civil doings, but not all civil lawsuits involve criminal actions.
Defining Civil Case
A civil case occurs when a person or an entity, like a company, claims that another person or entity failed to fulfill the duties. Duties are the responsibilities that should be done based on the Constitution, Federal law, and state laws. The complainant is the plaintiff, while the one who failed to adhere to the agreement is the defendant. In a civil case, the plaintiff may request the court to let the defendant fulfill the duty, or compensate for the harm done. In other cases, the plaintiff could ask for both.
The most common civil case is when an individual or an entity failed to fulfill what was agreed upon in a contract with the plaintiff. This will be brought to the state and federal courts.
Here are common frameworks for the procedures in civil lawsuits:
- Filing of grievance – A civil case starts when a party files for a complaint, which should include the “cause of action,” or the reason for filing the case.
- Serving of grievance – After filing, the grievances will be served to the defendant. The defendant must show some sign of acknowledgement of the service. Otherwise, it will be served in the formal manner.
- Response – This is the answer of the defendant to the plaintiff’s grievance, challenging its sufficiency.
- Hearing – This is when the motions of the litigant will be detected and judged.
- Discovery – This is when the necessary proofs are displayed for the prosecution.
Reach a Settlement
Civil cases take too much money and time to process. If you are a defendant, it would be best to negotiate with the plaintiff and reach a settlement. Giving compromise compensation is better than getting judgment.
But, whether you are the plaintiff or the defendant, it is best to consult and hire an attorney to get the best out of a civil case.