Civil cases are usually disputes between private citizens, corporations, governmental bodies or other organizations. They can include landlord and tenant disputes, contract disputes, and marriage dissolutions.
Individuals may file a suit where there has been either an intentional or reckless act by the offender or other responsible party that caused the harm to the victim. The act must be an unpermitted offensive contact, a threat to physically harm the victim where the offender has the ability to carry out that threat, or other extreme and outrageous conduct. There also must be some actual damage to the victim such as property loss, physical injury, or very severe emotional distress.
Other parties who may be sued include owners or operators of the premises where the crime occurred, if they were negligent in some way, or the offender’s insurance company.
If a claim for damages is less than $7,500 an affordable alternative to a civil lawsuit is to file a claim in conciliation court (small claims court).