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Civil law has two main meanings. First, civil law is a system of law in the world. Civil law, as a system of law, is different from common law, which is another system of law. The origin of the civil law system of law is ancient Rome. The civil law system is used in countries such as Germany, France, many countries which were colonies of those European countries before, and in some Asian countries. It also been adopted in Latin America as well as in some parts of Asia and some African countries.
Second, civil law is an individual part of the law system in any country. It is different from criminal law. Unlike criminal law, civil law deals with disputes between people and/or organizations which can be compensated. For example, if a car crash victim asks for payments from the driver because of loss or injury that happened to him in an accident, this will be a civil law case.