Civil law is mostly about disputes between individuals or corporate bodies. Cases must be proved on the balance of probabilities (more than a 50 per cent probability that the defendant is liable) rather than the ‘beyond reasonable doubt’ standard applied in criminal cases.
In both criminal and civil cases, the courts make decisions on an adversarial rather than an inquisitorial basis. This means that both sides test the credibility and reliability of the evidence their opponent presents to the court. The judge makes decisions based on the evidence presented[nidirect-UK]