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QUAID-E-AZAM LAW COLLEGE, LAHORE

Law of Torts
Difference between Tort and Crime

1.

INTORDUCTION:

2.

INTERPRETATION OF TERM TORT:


I. LITERAL INTERPRETATION:
Some thing wrong that sb does to sb else that is not criminal but that can be to action in a
civil court. (Oxford Dictionary)
II. LEGAL INTERPREATION:
A civil wrong, other than breach of contract for which a remedy may be obtained, in the form
of damage, a breach of a duty that the law imposes on persons who stand in a particular relation to
one another.
(Blacks Law Dictionary).

3.

INTERPRETATION OF TERM CRIME:


A positive or negative act in violation of the penal law of the state.
(Blacks Law Dictionary)

4.

DEFINITION OF TERM TORT:

5.

DEFINITION OF TERM CRIME:

6.

DIFFERENCE BETWEEN TORT AND CRIME


I)

NATURE OF RIGHT INFRINGED:


(a) Tort:
A tort is a breach of private civil right of an individual considered as an
individual.
(b) Crime:
A crime is breach of public rights and duties of the whole community
considered as community.

II)

OBJECT OF ACTION:
(a) Tort:
In tort, the wrong-doer has to compensate the injured party.
(b) Crime:
In crime, the wrong-doer is punished by the state in the interest of the
society.

III) WHO VINDICATES THE RIGHT ?.


(a) Tort:
In tort, the sufferer files an action against the wrong-doer.
(b) Crime:
In crime, prosecution is conducted by and in the name of the state.
IV) NATURE OF REMEDY:

(a) Tort:
In the most of the torts, the remedy is by way of damages i.e. the injured
party is compensated.
(b) Crime:
In crime, the accused is punished by the state.
V)

PROCUDEURE:
(a) Tort:
Tort is a civil wrong and injured party has to collect and put forward his
evidence and engage a lawyer with their own choice and their own expense.
(b) Crime:
In crime, the proceedings are handled by the District Attorney at the state
expense and investigation is conducted and evidence is collected by the
police/prosecution.

VI) COMPROMISE:
(a) Tort:
Compromise is permissible in tort.
(b) Crime:
Compromise is not generally permissible in crime.
VII)

LAW APPLICABLE TO PROCEDURE:


(a) Tort:
The Code of Civil Procedure, 1908. regulates the proceedings in tort.
(b) Crime:
The Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898. regulates the proceedings in crime.

VIII)

IMPORTANCE OF INTENTION:
(a) Tort:
Intention of the wrong-doer is of no importance in tort or of sub-ordinate
importance
(b) Crime:
In crime, intention is the crux of the case or the gist of crime.

IX) CODIFICATION:
(a) Tort:
Law of tort is not codified law.
(b) Crime:
Law of crime is codified e.g Pakistan Penal Code, 1860. and The Code of
Criminal Procedure, 1898.

X)

TITLE OF THE CASE:


(a) Tort:
Tort is a civil wrong, hence the title of the case will be e.g. Ahmad Vs
Umer.
(b) Crime:
In crime, the proceedings are conducted by and in the name of the state,
hence the title of the case will be e.g. State Vs Aslam

XI) STATUS OF PARTIES:


(a) Tort:
In tort, parties are called plaintiff and defendant.
(b) Crime:
In crime, parties are called Complainant and Accused.
XII)

LIMITATION:
(a) Tort:
Limitation period in tort is different from limitation period in crime.
(b) Crime:
Limitation period in crime is different from limitation period in tort.

XIII)

NECESSITY AS DEFENCE:
(a) Tort:
Necessity is a defense under tort.
(b) Crime:
Necessity is not a defense under crime.

XIV)

PUNISHMENT:
(a) Tort:
In general, there is no concept of punishment in tort, only compensation is
to be awarded.
(b) Crime:
A convicted person must be punished under crime.

XV)COURTS:
(a) Tort:
All tort suits are filed in Civil Courts.
(b) Crime:
All criminal suits are filed in Criminal Courts.

XVI)

ENGAGEMENT OF LAWYER:
(a) Tort:
In tort, party engages a lawyer with his own choice and at his own expense.
(b) Crime:
In crime, proceedings are handled by District Attorney at the State expense.

7.

8.

SIMILARITIES OF TORT AND CRIME:


I)

FIXATION OF RIGHTS AND DUTIES:

II)

PRINCIPLE OF VICARIOUS LIABILITY:

III)

RIGHT OF PRIVATE DEFENCE:

CONCLUSION