Will a Criminal Conviction Affect my Civil Case?
It is very common for someone to get in a car wreck or other accident and face both criminal and civil charges. For example, if you ran a red light and struck a car in the process, you could be charged with Failure to Obey a Traffic Control Device and you could also be sued by the driver of the other car that you struck. Your first instinct may be to just pay the fine associated with the traffic ticket. However, this is often a big mistake.
If you are being sued civilly and you have a related criminal case against you at the same time, you must be careful in how your resolve the criminal matter. If you admit liability in the criminal matter, it can (and most definitely will) be used against you in the civil case. Therefore, if you simply paid the traffic ticket, the other driver would use that to argue that you are financially responsible for their injuries. While the ticket could cost you $200-$300, a typical car accident civil case could cost you $10,000-$20,000. Admitting liability would therefore be a painful mistake.
If you are being charged criminally and civilly, you need an experienced attorney to make sure that all of your interests are protected. Give us a call today to learn how we can help you.