Civil cases are based on injury and harm. They form an area of law known as “torts,” but that doesn’t mean they’re entirely separate from crimes.
Legally, the two are separate. Personal injury claims fall under Part III of the Massachusetts General Laws while criminal cases fall under Part IV. But often criminal cases give rise to civil claims.
That’s because a criminal prosecution doesn’t directly benefit the victim. So when a crime results in injury that racks up medical costs and other bills, a civil case is the best option.
But the outcome of the criminal case can have a big impact.