Tuesday, 23 December 2014

What are the differences between a civil dispute and criminal lawsuits?

A civil dispute is one in which one party sues the other party for damages due to contractual disputes and tort. Such disputes do not attract punishment by the state unlike criminal cases.

In criminal cases, the Public Prosecutor institutes proceedings against the accused, i.e. the person charged with the criminal offence. Under Article 35(music) of the Constitution, the Public Prosecutor is empowered to bring charges against any person for any offence. Punishment is also meted out by the State.

What is “burden of proof”?

Burden of proof refers to the duty that is emplaced upon the parties to prove their assertion. In civil disputes, the burden of proof often lies with the party bringing the suit who has to prove “on a balance of probabilities” that his or her case is valid.

As for criminal cases, the burden of proof lies with the Public Prosecutor and he or she has to prove “beyond a reasonable doubt” that the accused is guilty.

How can a Singapore criminal or commercial lawyer assist in my case?

In a civil dispute, it would be better to engage a commercial lawyer to assist in a case especially if issues are complicated and if the other party has engaged a lawyer to serve the papers.

As for criminal lawsuits, our criminal lawyers can assist to determine the strengths and weaknesses of your case with reference to previous similar cases.

Call Gloria James-Civetta & Co for assistance in your legal matter on 63370469