What is Civil Law?
Civil Law is that branch of law that safeguards the rights of individual members of society and provides legal remedies to disputes. It includes cases pertaining to property, contract, tort, family disputes, trade, environment, etc.
Civil Law aims to rectify wrong-doings and amicably settle disputes. The party who suffers any injury is compensated for the damage. The party who files a complaint to start the litigation is called the plaintiff. Similarly, the party that responds to the complaint is called the defendant. The wrong-doer bears the damage to the extent the wrong done is made good to the aggrieved party.
What is Criminal Law?
Criminal Law defines conduct prohibited by the state that threatens public welfare and safety. The law also prescribes punishment for committing such crimes. The objective is to punish the wrong-doer and to deter him and others in society from repeating it.
Prosecution in Criminal Law begins when an individual reports a crime to the police. The police then investigate the crime and file criminal charges. It is not the individual but the government who files a case against another individual in Criminal Law.
Difference between Civil Law and Criminal Law
Given below is a table that distinguishes between Civil Law and Criminal Law;
Basis of Difference
Civil Law deals with wrong-doing related to an individual, which can be made right with monetary compensation.
Crimes committed under Criminal Law are offenses against society and are punished with capital punishment.
Litigation in Civil Law begins when one party files a case against another. The complaining party is called the plaintiff, and the party that responds to the complaint is called the defendant.
Charges in Criminal Law can only be filed by the government and not an individual. An individual report a crime based on which a case is filed.
In Civil Law, the wrong-doer has to reimburse the aggrieved with monetary compensation.
Criminal crimes are severe crimes with harsher punishment. The person found guilty can be sentenced to prison or, in some cases, awarded the death penalty.
Burden of Proof
In the case of Civil Law, the burden of proof first lies with the plaintiff to provide evidence of wrongdoing. It then shifts to the defendant to refute the evidence provided. More than 50% of the evidence is enough to favor the plaintiff in Civil Law.
The burden of proof in cases related to Criminal Law lies with the government to prove the defendant guilty. The defendant will be proven guilty if there is 99% evidence against him.
There is a noteworthy Difference Between Civil Law and Criminal Law as they serve different purposes. However, both laws are necessary for the smooth functioning of society.