Law and Justice imprinted on building

Civil Cases 101: How Do You Define a Civil Case or Matter?

You may be unfamiliar with the terms, but once you hear more about how a civil case or matter is defined, you’ll better recognize the reasons why you may want to choose to pursue a civil case. And, you may even know a friend or family member who has gone through one. Civil cases are also referred to as civil litigation, which is defined as a lawsuit based on non-criminal charges.

Civil litigation cases are typically legal disputes between two parties, with one of the parties looking to seek some sort of compensation. These cases are handled by litigators, which is a lawyer or group of lawyers who specialized in taking legal action against organizations, businesses, or individuals.

What Are the Different Areas of Civil Litigation?

First, we’ll dive into a few different types of civil cases. There are many different types of civil cases but some are more common than others. A civil case can happen anytime there is a legal dispute between two parties, but the more common ones are:

Employment Lawsuits

Did you know you can file a civil lawsuit against your employer? You could file a wrongful termination, discrimination, workplace injury, or harassment case, among other disputes. In the state of California, our California Fair Employment and Housing Act make it illegal to discriminate against employees for over 10 protected classes. If you believe that you may have a legal dispute with your employer, it can be helpful to hire an experienced litigation attorney to be by your side during the process. Beginning a lawsuit against your employer can be daunting, and hiring the right person can help make all the difference.

Business Litigation

Another well-known type of civil case is business litigation. If you’re an employer receiving a civil case from an employee, or you have a disagreement with one of your business partners, you may choose to hire a civil litigation lawyer to help you through the process. Both large corporations and small businesses alike. A law firm can help you with different types of legal matters, including:

  • Business Torts

  • Dissolutions

  • Transactional Matters

  • Partnership Disputes

  • Breach of Contract

  • Contract Drafting or Disputes

Business owners may also at some point need to begin a civil case against an ex-employee or contractor who violates a non-disclosure agreement.

Contract & Property Disputes

Diving a bit deeper into contract & property disputes, a breach of contract dispute is one of the more popular types of civil cases. A breach of contract means that one or more parties who signed an agreement did not fulfill some or all of their portion of the contract.

A matter involving contract litigation may focus on factors such as:

  • Breach of confidentiality agreement

  • Breach of fiduciary duty

  • Compensatory damages

  • Breach of warranty

  • Partnership disputes

Unfortunately, contract disputes are quite common. These can be resolved in many different ways, via mediation, arbitration, negotiation, or civil litigation. Hiring a civil litigation lawyer can help determine the best route and fit your dispute.

Personal Injury Lawsuits

A personal injury civil case can be made against an individual or against a business. If someone was harmed by a product a business creates and distributes, that business may be on the receiving end of a civil lawsuit. Businesses may also be responsible for those who are injured on the job, as well as those who become injured while visiting their business. The same can apply to personal property. if someone was injured on your property, they may begin a civil case against you. In civil personal injury cases, an individual is typically filing against another person, property, or entity, claiming some sort of negligence.

Landlord & Tenant Disputes & Unlawful Detainers

An unlawful detainer is a term used in California to describe a lawsuit to serve a tenant an eviction notice. Typically, by the time a landlord files an unlawful detainer, they will have tried to serve a notice of eviction to their tenant. There are many reasons why legal action needs to take place between a landlord and their tenant. If you’re involved in a landlord and tenant dispute, it’s important to answer the complaint or summons in a timely manner, contact your legal counsel, gather information and paperwork or evidence as needed, and make copies. It’s helpful to have an experienced civil litigation attorney to help walk you through the process.

Auto Dealership Litigation Cases

Did you know that if you own an auto dealership you have obligations to many parties, not just your customers? Owning an auto dealership means you’ll most likely need counsel to help navigate lemon laws, finance agreements, contracts, and negotiations. Over the course of business, you may also receive civil cases against you regarding manufacturer disputes, contract or financial disputes, or even fraud. Hiring the right representation on retainer can help you navigate any civil case coming your way.

If you have questions or would like to discuss a potential civil case with one of our litigators, we can help. Contact our offices today to learn more or schedule your consultation with our team.