Explaining Civil Cases



  1. In civil law, the party who brings a suit or some other legal action against other (the defendant) in court.


In a civil suit, the person against whom a court action is brought by the plaintiff; in a criminal case, the person charged with the crime.


Is a statement that a situation is unsatisfactory or unacceptable, a reason for dissatisfaction.


Is an order to appear before a judge or magistrate, or the writ containing it.


Is the action of making an emotional or earnest appeal to someone.

Pretrial Conference

  1. Is if the Defendant(s) answers the Complaint, the case will be scheduled for a pre-trial conference. At the conference, the parties will meet with a judicial officer in an attempt to narrow the issues, determine the number of witnesses to be called, the length of the trial, and to discuss the possibility of settlement.


Is an intervention in a dispute in order to resolve it; arbitration


Is the use of an arbitrator to settle a dispute.


Is a formal examination of evidence before a judge, and typically before a jury, in order to decide guilt in a case of criminal or civil proceedings

Preponderance of Evidence

Is the greater weight of the evidence required in a civil (non-criminal) lawsuit for the trier of fact (jury or judge without a jury) to decide in favor of one side or the other. This preponderance is based on the more convincing evidence and its probable truth or accuracy, and not on the amount of evidence.


Is a decision on a disputed issue in a civil or criminal case or an inquest.


Is to apply to a higher court for a reversal of the decision of a lower court.