Negotiating Plea Deals

Situations Where Personal Injury Claims Become Criminal Cases

by Flenn Lane

Majority of the personal injury claims that make it court get handle under civil law. However, there are instances where both civil and criminal law intersects on a personal injury lawsuit. Sometimes, a case will start as a civil lawsuit but later on advance into a criminal case.  In such scenarios, the defendant may not be sure of their options or their rights. However, if the civil case advances into a criminal prosecution, the defendant should get a criminal defense lawyer. Hence, here are three examples of personal injury lawsuits that can become criminal cases. 

Personal Injury Resulting From Negligence Due to Intoxication

If you cause an accident, the motorist/pedestrians you crashed into can decide to sue you in civil court for the personal injuries they acquired during a crash. If it gets revealed that you caused the accident out of negligence alone, the court will order you to compensate the motorist/pedestrian for their injuries.  However, suppose evidence such as blood alcohol level reveals that you were intoxicated when the accident happened. In that case, you will face both the civil suit for personal injury claims and criminal charges simultaneously. You will require a criminal defense lawyer to provide legal counsel on the criminal case against you in such a scenario.

Employer's Gross Negligence

The most common type of personal injury claim is workplace injuries, where an employee gets injured while working. Sometimes, an employer lacks workman's compensation, and as a result, the employee decides to sue the employer for reparations. Suing an employer falls under civil law. However, if the employee can prove that the injury resulted from negligence on the employer's part, there is a chance the case might escalate into a criminal lawsuit. For instance, if an employer refuses to fix a faulty piece of equipment but still directs the employees to use it. If an employee gets injured by faulty equipment, then the employer can face a criminal negligence lawsuit in addition to a personal injury lawsuit. In such a case, the employer will need the services of a criminal lawyer.

Claiming Injury Compensation Under False Pretense

When employees file for workman's compensation, they have to prove that their injury was purely accidental, and thus they can get compensated for their injuries. However, sometimes an employee gets injured due to another co-worker but decides to sue the employer to get compensation. If the court discovers that the employee is lying about the cause of the accident, the employee is likely to face criminal charges for fraud and perjury. In such an instance, the employee will require a criminal defense attorney.