What Are the Two Kinds of Legal Cases

As in criminal cases, the majority of civil litigation is left to state courts. Federal courts only deal with civil matters that are either: Criminal and civil matters can be appealed. One or more plaintiffs or defendants may appeal the judgment of a Supreme Court to a Court of Appeal. If the Court of Appeal finds that the Supreme Court erred, it may overturn the decision or refer it back to the trial court for further review. For more information on appeals, read the information above on courts of appeal. Here is an organizational chart showing how criminal and civil cases are contested. The powers of the federal courts are limited. You can only consider cases if: deprivation of parental rights and adoptions. If there are serious reasons why a parent should no longer have a parental relationship with a child (such as abandonment, neglect, abuse, etc.), the family court may revoke that parent`s rights. If someone else wishes to become the legal parent of a child, the family court may grant adoption if the parent-child relationship is legally established. For more information, see the Adoptions and Termination of Parental Rights section of this website. If the state believes that you have committed a crime, the state`s prosecutor`s office can file a criminal complaint against you. Only the state – not another person or authority – can charge you with a criminal offence.

To learn more about how criminal matters are handled, visit the Criminal Self-Help section of this website. There are 3 different types of criminal cases: violation, misdemeanor and felony. Persons who are not satisfied with a decision of the court of first instance may challenge their case before a court of appeal. When they « appeal », they ask a higher court to change the decision of the court of first instance. The 7th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees you the right to sue someone for any loss or damage they have caused you. This is called a civil action. In a civil action, the person who brings the action against another party is called the plaintiff. The party sued by the plaintiff is called the defendant.

While you have the right to sue someone in federal court, not all civil suits are federal matters. See below for civil cases that may be heard in Federal Court. A crime is the most serious type of crime. If convicted, you can be sent to a state prison or receive the death penalty. Click here to learn more about crime. Here is an organizational chart showing how criminal cases are progressing through the justice system. The Supreme Court of the United States has a Chief Justice and 8 associate justices. The Supreme Court may select a limited number of cases from among the cases to be decided. These cases can begin in federal or state courts. And they usually include important questions about the Constitution or federal law. Here is an organizational chart showing how criminal cases are progressing through the justice system.

Minor-related matters. The Family Court oversees all cases in which there are allegations of child abuse or neglect or where minors are accused of participating in unlawful conduct. These issues are largely dealt with by the Youth Department of the District Prosecutor`s Office. The Family Court may also approve work permits for minors under the age of 14. For more information, see Work permits for youth. These cases almost always go to state courts. Or sometimes they are resolved by special parts of the federal or legislative executive branch. But not all civil cases follow these steps.

Some cases (for example, summary deportation cases) have unique procedures set out in court rules or applicable laws. To learn more about the steps of a particular type of case, you can visit your local law library. Click here to visit our Law Library page to learn more. In criminal cases, the government prosecutes one or more defendants. The defendant in a criminal case is the person charged by the government with committing a crime. At the U.S. District Court level, the government is represented by the U.S. Attorney (or an Assistant U.S. Attorney), also known as the U.S.

Attorney. CAUTION! The Civic Support Centre does not provide any information or forms for criminal cases. You should not use the information on this website if you are involved in a criminal matter. To learn more about criminal cases, visit your local law library. Click here to visit our LAW LIBRARY page to learn more. To resolve the case, the court (through a judge or jury) will eventually establish the facts of the case (in other words, find out what really happened) and apply the appropriate law to those facts. On the basis of this application of the law to the facts of the case, the court or jury decides what legal consequences ultimately result from the parties` actions. The Supreme Court is the highest court in the state. It may review cases decided by the courts of appeal. In addition, some types of cases go directly to the Supreme Court and are not first heard by the Court of Appeal: civil cases involve conflicts between individuals or institutions such as corporations, usually for money. Civil proceedings generally begin when a person or entity (the « plaintiff ») claims to have been harmed by the actions of another person or entity (the « defendant ») and the court seeks redress by filing a « complaint » and initiating legal proceedings. The plaintiff can ask the court for « damages » (money to compensate the plaintiff for the harm suffered), or he can ask for an « injunction » to prevent the defendant from doing something, or he can ask the defendant to do something, or he can ask for a « declaratory judgment » in which the court determines the rights of the parties under a contract or law.

This type of case occurs when both parties come from different states or different countries. Any diversity jurisdiction case can be filed in state court instead of a federal court. However, if the case is worth less than $75,000, you will have to file it in state court. Name change. A child or adult may be legally able to change their name through a name change case in family court. For more information, see Rename. « Civil cases » are cases before the courts in which there is no question of breaking a criminal law (called a violation of criminal law). There are many types of cases before the civil courts.

You bring a civil suit or « lawsuit » in civil court if you believe you have suffered financial or physical harm. If you are injured, it is usually referred to as a « tort ». The civil court deals with things like car accidents and contract disputes. In many parts of the world, civil and criminal proceedings are consolidated into one case, but not in our country. When there are serious civil and criminal aspects of an event, there are two (or more) different cases. An example would be a crime that leads to criminal prosecution against the accused, with victims filing a separate civil suit against the defendant to obtain the damages caused by the crime. What types of cases are civil cases? Divorce and related actions (child support, custody and others) account for a very large number of civil cases. Cases involving contracts are also common. Car collisions represent many cases of tort (bodily injury), another common type of civil case.

A motor vehicle collision results in a civil lawsuit if one driver sues the other or if a passenger in one of the cars pursues one of the drivers. A car collision can also result in criminal prosecution if it involves allegations of a crime such as drinking and driving or leaving the scene of the accident. Civil courts handle a wide range of cases involving many legal issues. More generally, civil cases can include things like « civil cases » where individuals (or companies) sue each other in court. Civil cases are not intended to violate criminal law. Family matters are a type of civil matter, but they usually involve matters between or concerning spouses, parents and children. Specifically, federal courts hear criminal, civil and bankruptcy cases. And once a case is decided, it can often be challenged. In criminal cases, the presumption of innocence of the accused applies. The prosecutor (the DA) must prove the guilt of an accused beyond a doubt.

And to convict an accused, the jury must be unanimous, so the 12 jurors must agree on the verdict. The plaintiff can ask the court for « damages » (money to compensate the plaintiff for the harm suffered), or he can ask for an « injunction » to prevent the defendant from doing anything, or he can ask the defendant to do something, or he can ask for a « declaratory judgment » in which the court determines the rights of the parties under a contract or law. « Civil cases » are cases in which individuals (or companies) sue each other in court.