Difference Between Civil and Criminal Law

This assignment will consider the differences in Civil and Criminal law. It will explain the roles of solicitors, Barristers, Judges and Magistrates. It will also critically look at the features of the European Court of Human Rights. 4Civil law is a private law.it settles matters between two individuals and organisations. It still has the roman standard in many countries because it was originated from the Roman law. The end result is mostly damages in civil law. Example of civil cases includes Donoghue v Stevenson [1993] where Donoghue sued Stevenson for damages of £500 for drinking contaminated ginger beer which had negative effect on his health, Millar v Taylor (17690) is another example of civil case

5Criminal law considers crimes committed against the crown ( R ). [6] “Government identifies and criminalises behaviour that is considered wrong, damaging to individuals through criminal law” Jacqueline Martin and Chris Turner define crime as [7] a conduct forbidden by the state. when a conduct is regarded by the state as being criminal, there is always a punishment attached to it”. i.e. murder and theft. Example of criminal case includes R v Wilson (1994) and R v Brown (1991) where R stands for the Crown or the State. Criminal law was made to protect organisations, individuals, the society and their properties.

They are also made to punish offenders. The aim of sentencing offenders also include reparation, incapacitation, deterrence and reformation

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Criminal law is drafted by the government. It is made by the crown ( R ) and passed by Parliament before it goes to the monarch for “rubber-stumping” as law. (This process is known as ‘Royal Assent’). Offenders are prosecuted by the Crown when they commit crimes against citizens. It is the duty of the police to enforce the law.

8Civil law applies to the principals of common law but in civil actions unlike criminal proceedings, the Crown takes no sides. The crown supplies the court, the judge and if necessary the enforcement of the judge’s rulings.


9Criminal law punishes guilty defendant by either incarceration in a jailed. There are also fine paid to the government in exceptional cases. Community service could be the punishment on offenders depending on the type of crime committed. Contrary to criminal law, defendant in civil law is not imprisoned when found liable but reimburse the claimant for losses by the defendants act.

Burden of proof

In criminal law, one can never be guilty without “proven 99 percent guilty beyond reasonable doubt “as per Lord Denning. When one feels that the crime committed is done due to his or her insanity, then the burden lies on the defendant to prove it. The Crown has the right to punish criminal offenders because all crimes are against the state. For example, if one commits the crime of burglary by breaking into a house and steal, the state will prosecute the offender when even the victim brings private proceedings against the burglar.

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