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Civil Law

Civil Law is the body of law that provides remedies for violations of private rights. Civil Law deals with rights and duties  between individuals. Civil claims begin when one party Files a complaint against another usually for the purpose of gaining financial restitution. The purpose of a civil lawsuit is to compensate  for harm done to another individuals. Unlike criminal cases juries in civil cases need not consist of 12 jurors but may have as few as sic jurors. The verdict of the jury need not be unanimous. Civil cases are often heard by judges instead of juries. To by successful plaintiffs in civil cases must only be slightly more evidence supporting the defendant. In both civil and criminal proceedings the parities often call expert witnesses to give their opinion on matters thought to be too technical for the jurors or judge to understand. Fraud examiners and accountants are often used as experts in fraud cases to compute and testify to the amount of damages. When fraud is committed criminal prosecution usually proceeds first.

As an example of civil litigation after the World-Com  fraud was disclosed several organizations including some of the banks that loaned money to WorldCom and allegedly precipitated in the financial fraud were sued by investors. In 2004 one of those banks, Citigroup agreed to settle investors civil claims by agreeing to pay $2.65 billion to investors. These kinds of out-of-court settlements often occur before civil cases can go to trial.

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