How a Criminal Case Can Impact An Injury Claim in Maryland

For those unfamiliar with the legal system, it may be hard to differentiate between a criminal and civil case. Yet, while there are some overlapping similarities, overall each is unique in its own way and leads to different outcomes, such as financial punishment in civil cases and criminal punishment typically in criminal cases. 

With these differences in mind, the following is more information on the difference between civil and criminal cases in Maryland, and whether you have the ability to file a claim while someone is also facing criminal action. If you are interested in learning more about the relationship between criminal and civil claims in Maryland, call and schedule a consultation today. A Maryland injury lawyer can help you proceed through the claims process and help you maximize your recovery. Call today.

How Are Injury Cases Different From Criminal Cases in Maryland?

The distinction between criminal and injury cases begins with the fact that criminal cases are brought by a prosecutor while in civil cases there is no prosecutor. Additionally, in criminal cases the burden of proof is beyond a reasonable doubt, which is a much higher standard than in injury cases where proof is a preponderance of evidence, which simply means something is more likely to be true than not.

Furthermore, there is not a government entity that pursues claims against people, but rather a lawyer who brings claims against a private defender or a government defender. This is unique from criminal cases where claims are brought on behalf of the government and not an individual. 

If Someone Is Charged With a Crime Do You Have To Wait To Sue?

While you do not have to wait to file an injury claim it may be advisable if that crime is related to your injury. One example of this is the O.J. Simpson trial where he was tried criminally and found not guilty and then a civil suit was brought after that.

The thought process behind this being that all the investigation is being performed by the prosecutor and is likely gathered in a certain way in their file so it will be helpful to wait until the investigation was completed, because you would not ordinarily be entitled to look at their file until after their investigation is completed.

If you wait until after they are prosecuted or the criminal case runs its course, you have a better idea of what evidence there is that you can gather against that particular defendant or defendants and you will be in a position to evaluate the merits of your own civil case.