Boise, ID asked in Personal Injury for Idaho

Q: How does a personal injury lawsuit turn into a criminal case?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Kurt Holzer
Kurt Holzer
  • Boise, ID
  • Licensed in Idaho

A: A personal injury case is a civil case. A civil case is a private lawsuit brought by a one person against another person. A civil case provides compensation to the injured person. On the other hand a criminal case is brought by the State of Idaho against a person for an act the law says is illegal. A criminal case provides punishment- either fines or incarceration -for breaking the law.

While the acts underlying a civil case can also be a basis for a criminal case, the personal injury lawsuit does not "turn into" a criminal case. A person who brings a personal injury case might file a report with the police that a prosecutor decides to use to pursue a criminal case. Thus, while the cases can be related one does not change into the other one

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