Civil Law. Ch. 17.1 Academic Civics. Civil Law. Legal action against another person or group to collect damages Lawsuit – case brought forth by a plaintiff to collect from another side. Jurisdiction of Civil Cases. Things that would be tried in civil courts :
Civil Law Legal action against another person or group to collect damages Lawsuit – case brought forth by a plaintiff to collect from another side
Jurisdiction of Civil Cases Things that would be tried in civil courts: Property disputes (land boundaries, title, etc.) Breach of contract Family matters (custody, divorce, etc.) Tort Law Negligence as the result of others Personal injury or harm
Small Claims Court Involve civil disputes under (in most states) $5000 Generally don’t have lawyers – why? You see small claims court all the time on TV Judge Judy People’s Court Judge Mathis Etc.
Suits of Equity A case used to decide on a matter in which there is no existing law Example: filing a lawsuit to force restaurants to put “hot coffee” warnings on cups
To what extent do lawsuits go too far? There are numerous instances in which one rightfully deserves to collect damages due to negligence. But where is the line drawn?
Tort Reform Debate in Civil Law Tort reform = making it harder for people to file tort lawsuits against others Supporters of Tort Reform Lower court costs and number of cases Benefit business and industries economically Opponents of Tort Reform Right to sue under 7th Amendment It encourages negligence and wrong-doing
Injunction Court order requiring a person to stop a certain action Example: A judge orders a car company to stop making faulty automobiles Judge’s ruling takes the effect of law Preponderance of Evidence B-O-P
Class Action Lawsuit Lawsuit involving many people suing another company, individual, or group. Can involve dozens or thousands of people Starts in state courts and can end up in federal courts (if it involves multiple states) People informed of the lawsuit and have 2 options: Accept the lawsuit and collect $$ Opt out of it Damages collected are parceled out to each person equally.
Fictional Example of Class Action Lawsuit 5,000 people get very sick or die after taking a medication that got FDA approval. 4,000 of the victims arrange class action lawsuit against the pharmaceutical company that made the drug Case is settled out of court for $800,000 Each person gets a check for $200