NEWS

March 2016

The Differences Between Criminal Theft And Civil Theft


Criminal theft refers to crimes that involve the taking of personal property without the consent of the owner. On the other hand, civil theft refers to the intentional act of taking property that belongs to other persons. The difference between civil claims and criminal claims is oftentimes hard to understand for people who have been caught shoplifting. A shoplifter who is caught breaking the law is prone to be arrested by the police, given a court date, and asked to appear in front of a judge in a court of law. Provided that person is found guilty, they will be sentenced. But it is also possible for a shoplifter to be pursued civilly. This is something not all people know. If you are interested to learn more about the topic, these next few lines will shed more light over the matter.

Criminal Theft Crimes

  • larceny is the act of taking and carrying away another person's personal property, with the intention of depriving them from the respective item on a Car locksmith servicespermanent basis;
  • grand theft is the act of taking property from another person, with the respective item's value being higher than a predefined amount;
  • petty theft is the act of taking property valued under a certain amount, less than $1,000 in some US jurisdictions;
  • theft by conversion is the illegal act of proerty retention that was initially obtained in a legal manner;
  • theft of lost property is the unlawful retention of property that was lost/mislaid.
  • all cases of criminal theft are prosecuted by the state. When a person is found guilty of theft, they may receive a fine, community service, or prison time.
  • burglary is the act of entering a property with the intention to commit a theft or another felony. Burglaries do not require any property to be stolen, and they also do not involve any human interaction.

Civil Theft Crimes

  • a person who has had money or personal property stolen from them is called a plaintiff and can file a theft lawsuit in a civil court with the purpose of recovering their money/property. The person accused of the act of civil theft is called a defendant and they may be found liable or not liable for the act of theft they are being accused of. If they are found liable, they will have to pay the plaintiff. Prison time is not a type of sentence for someone who is found liable for civil theft.
  • Guilt or liability needs to be proven in different ways in criminal and civil theft cases. For example, criminal cases require the state to prove the defendant is guilty beyond any reasonable doubt.
  • It is possible for a criminal conviction of a defendant to influence the outcome of a civil lawsuit, especially when the plaintiff has successfully proven the defendant is guilty of the criminal act.
  • If you currently need to handle a criminal theft case, you should ask for the help of a criminal defense lawyer. If your vehicle or home has been broken into and you have had items stolen from it, you should contact the nearest locksmith for car or homes and have all the locks re-keyed.