From CIMA Exam Practice Kit: Business Law
Comparison of Criminal and Civil Law.
Criminal punishment of the wrongdoer
Civil compensation of the victim
Case brought by
Criminal the state
Civil the victim
Burden of proof
Criminal beyond reasonable doubt
Civil on a balance of probabilities
Criminal Magistrate's Court, Crown Court
Civil County Court, High Court
Outcome if defendant loses
Criminal imprisonment, fine, community service, probation
Civil damages, specific performance, injunction
Sources of Law
There are two main sources of law in the UK.
Acts of Parliament (sometimes called statutes).
Case Law developed by the courts.
The Meaning of a Judicial Precedent
When a Judge decides a case before him, his judgment will have to be based on some legal principle or process of legal reasoning. It is desirable that in all the future cases of a similar kind the same process of legal reasoning should apply.
Case Law is based on two fundamental principles.
The doctrine of binding precedent.
The hierarchy of the Courts.
A Judge is bound to apply the rules of law contained in earlier decisions of a higher Court and usually those of a Court of equal standing.
Not everything said is binding in later cases. We have to distinguish between ratio decidendi the legal principle on which the Judge bases his decision and obiter dicta other remarks made in passing.
Products & Services
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