Difference Between Civil law and Criminal Law


Even if we are experts in every area of the law in our nation, the average person may only be familiar with the fundamentals. Criminal and civil law are two of these branches that everyone is familiar with. These two topics fall under the typical legal headings, which likely encompass the majority of it as well. Anyone may identify a general distinction, but in this post, we'll go into more detail on the specific differences between civil and criminal law.


Civil Law

Criminal Law


Civil law deals with disputes and conflicts between individuals, organizations, or entities in matters of private rights and obligations. It focuses on resolving issues and providing remedies to the parties involved rather than punishing offenders.

Criminal law is the body of law that deals with crime and the associated penalties. Criminal law deals with offenses against accepted social norms. The punishment for the offense is to put the offender in jail.


To seek compensation, resolution, or enforcement of rights. To establish guilt and impose punishment.
Nature of Cases Private disputes, contracts, torts,Crimes against society or property rights, family matters, etc. Crimes against society or the state include murder, theft, assault, etc.
Examples of Cases Breach of contract, property disputes, Breach of contract, property disputes,
Parties Involved Plaintiff and Defendant. Prosecutor and Defendant.
Parties' Consent Civil cases can be resolved through negotiated settlements. Criminal cases proceed even without the victim's consent.


Compensation, injunctions, or specific performance of obligations. Fines, imprisonment, probation, or capital punishment.

Heared by

Civil law cases in India are heard by civil courts.

Criminal law cases are heard by either the Sessions Court or the Criminal Court.

Governed By

Criminal law in India is primarily governed by the Indian Penal Code (IPC), Civil law in India is primarily governed by various statutes, codes, and acts. e.g. The Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (CPC),The Indian Contract Act, 1872,The Transfer of Property Act, 1882 etc.

Filing of case

The government submits documents in criminal cases on behalf of the victim.

In civil cases, the party who has been wronged brings the case.