If you have never been sued or arrested before, it can be easy to confuse
proceedings and understand how each type of case is finalized. In some
situations, you may have cases pending in both criminal and civil court,
making it even more confusing.
Criminal Court Cases
If you are being “sued” in a criminal court, it means the government
is bringing charges against you for an activity that violates a local
state or federal law. Formal charges fall under two main categories, misdemeanors
(less serious offenses that involve penalties of 12 months or less in
jail) and felonies (more serious offenses that can bring a year or longer
in prison). Charges are brought on behalf of “The People,”
and are either prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office
for federal crimes or the Maryland State Attorney’s office for state-level crimes.
In a criminal matter, the victim is not the one to bring the charges, the
government does. In some instances, there may not be a victim per se.
Some crimes are considered an offense against society as a whole, which
may include driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol, which could
result in harm to another person and/or property.
When it comes to disposition of a criminal matter, the result, or sentence,
is usually a combination of the following penalties: fine/restitution
to a victim, community service, jail or prison time, and/or probation
If you have criminal charges pending against you or a loved one, you need
to hire a competent
Charles County criminal defense attorney to help you fight these charges and either get the case thrown out or
the charges reduced.
Civil Court Cases
Civil cases are actions that are brought on by a person or entity, which
could be a corporation or even the government in some cases. The basis
of the lawsuit is that the defendant failed to honor a legal duty owed
to the plaintiff. Some of the most common civil actions result from incidents
like an injury incurred during an auto accident, failure to pay rent,
or a breach of contract.
A breach of contract case may normally be a state matter, but if the parties
are from different states, or the disputed amount exceeds the minimum
$75,000, the case may be heard in federal court under the federal diversity
statute. Individuals or corporations can also bring civil suits in federal
court if there is a question of constitutional rights or a federal statute.
The resolution in a civil case is almost always a monetary settlement or
judgement if the case goes to trial. In some cases, a contractual dispute
may involve settlement that requires the losing party to “do something”
or honor the terms of a contract or agreement.
If you are planning to bring a civil lawsuit against another party, you
would want to hire a
Charles County personal injury attorney.
Retaining a Maryland Attorney
If you have any questions on what type of attorney you need, let our knowledgeable
team of Maryland attorneys at the Law Office of Robert R. Castro help
figure it out. Contact us at 301-870-1200, or visit our website at
This article has been provided by Law office of Robert Castro. For more
information or questions contact our office to speak to an experienced
lawyer at (301)870-1200.
Law office of Robert Castro.
2670 Crain Highway #411, Waldorf, MD 20601. (301)870-1200