Civil Standard of Proof

Standard Of Proof In A Civil Case

      In most civil cases, the judge or jury has to make a decision about which side wins based on a standard called "preponderance of the evidence."  This means that the winner's side of the story is more probably true than not true. It does not mean that one side brought in more evidence than the other side.  It means that one side's evidence was more convincing than the other's.

     In some cases, the standard for reaching a decision is "clear and convincing evidence."  This means that the winner needs to prove that his version of the facts is highly likely. It is an intermediate degree of proof, more than "preponderance of the evidence" but less than the certainty required to prove an issue "beyond a reasonable doubt" (the standard in criminal cases).

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