Law Basics: What is a Lawsuit?

Feb 4 2020

You may find yourself in the midst of a lawsuit for an employment issue, criminal charge, or even personal injury. While you are concerned about your own well-being and rightfully so, you may be wondering what to expect as you face a lawsuit.

We’re here to help–read on to learn more about the basics of lawsuits in Connecticut.

Civil vs. Criminal

A lawsuit is a court-based process in which one person can seek to hold another liable for some type of harm or wrongful act. A civil lawsuit can be brought by or against individual people, companies, or other forms of legal entities (such as estates or governments).

Conversely, a criminal lawsuit is brought by a prosecutor or other attorney representing the federal, state, or local government.

Burden of Proof

In civil lawsuits, the plaintiff (the person who brings the suit) has the burden of proof, which means the plaintiff must convince the jury that the facts are as presented and that there are grounds for the case.

In criminal cases, the burden of proof is placed on the prosecution, who must demonstrate that the defendant is guilty in order obtain a conviction.

There are various types of burden of proof. In criminal cases, the burden of proof must be established beyond a reasonable doubt. In civil cases, the standard of proof is (generally) preponderance of the evidence, which means more likely than not. In either case, it is the persuasiveness of the evidence – rather than the sheer amount – that is most important.

It’s a lot to process.  That’s why you need the help of a trusted law firm.

The sooner you contact the lawyers at Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti, P.C., the sooner they can familiarize themselves with your situation and the easier it will be for them to advise you as to your rights and options and the best course of action to take.

Whether you have been subjected to wrongful treatment in your workplace, investigated by law enforcement, or injured in an accident, you deserve justice. We are here to fight for you. Know your rights and options. Contact our Connecticut employment lawyers today for an evaluation of your situation.

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You will never meet a more knowledgeable and compassionate professional than Steve Fitzgerald. My employment situation was very complex, and Attorney Fitzgerald kept me focused while remaining extremely adept and “thinking on his feet.” Should the need present itself again, I would never seek anyone else’s counsel regarding employment issues. I cannot recommend him highly enough. — J.R., New Haven, CT

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When I go to a lawyer for advice, I am usually anxious, particularly the first meeting. Amanda DeMatteis was clear in describing my options and immediately set me at ease. Realistic assessment is important, and Amanda was clear as to how to set up the case and the direction she felt we should go. I had total confidence in her abilities and knew I was being well represented against a large corporation. More importantly, we were successful! —N.M., Haddam, CT

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