If someone’s trial was temporarily dismissed can they file a civil suit?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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If someone’s trial was temporarily dismissed can they file a civil suit?

My girlfriend got in trouble with her 2 friends, but they pled not guilty, she plead guilty. She was sentenced but the other 2 are still up for trial. However, their trial was temporarily dismissed or something like that. On the side the 2 friends are sueing for their injuries due to the trouble, so now since my girlfriend is found guilty but the other 2 were not tried, can they still she her? How should she proceed? From your experience do the verdicts of criminal cases always determine civil cases?

Asked on June 19, 2017 under Personal Injury, Ohio


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Civil cases and criminal are separate: you can file the one without regard to what is happening or has happened in the other. So regardless of the outcome of the "friends" criminal case (pending, dismissed, resolved, etc.), they can bring a civil suit if they want.
A criminal plea of guilty is conclusive evidence of guilt of the thing you pled to: your girlfriend admitted in court, under oath, on the record to doing whatever it was she pled guilty to. Someone else can use that guilty plea in a civil suit as evidence that she did that thing--she has already admitted to it.

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