burden of proof

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Related to Burden of persuasion: burden of proof, Clear and convincing evidence

Burden of Proof

The obligations one party must meet to prove a fact in court. The party holding the burden of proof in a case must back each of his/her assertions with evidence for them to be legally acceptable. In a criminal case, the burden of proof rests with the prosecutor; in a civil case, it resides with the plaintiff. See also: Beyond a reasonable doubt, Preponderance of evidence.

burden of proof

In court, the responsibility to come forward with credible evidence that a thing happened or did not happen.Normally,the party who complains about a wrongdoing has the burden of proof. In some circumstances, primarily under federal laws related to discrimination, the aggrieved party need only make an allegation of wrongful behavior and the defendant has the burden of proof that his or her behavior was reasonable under the circumstances.The burden of proof may be set at different levels for various types of litigation. For example:

• When contesting a property tax valuation, the owner must generally prove that the assessment was manifestly excessive, clearly erroneous, or confiscatory. This burden of proof is very high, much more than required to show the assessment was simply inaccurate.

• Housing discrimination cases involve a three-step process that moves the burden of proof back and forth. Under what is called the McDonnell Douglas test, plaintiffs have the burden of showing they are a member of a protected minority; they applied for and were qualified to rent or purchase property; and they were rejected and the housing or rental opportunity remained available afterward. That creates a presumption of discrimination, which shifts the burden to the defendants to prove they had legitimate, nondiscriminatory reasons for their actions. If successful, the burden shifts back to the plaintiffs to prove by a preponderance of the evidence (meaning, “more likely than not”) that the offered reason was a pretext and there really was a discriminatory purpose.

References in periodicals archive ?
(83) As Professor Alexander Reinert has pointed out in his contribution to this issue, an increasing number of lower courts have attempted to address the burden of persuasion issue, though primarily in the actual trial context.
If you find that (defendant) proved (insert appropriate burden of persuasion) that the [office of the sheriff] [Florida Department of Law Enforcement] misinformed [him] [her] or otherwise prevented [him] [her] from complying with the registration requirements, you should find [him] [her] not guilty.
1985) ("Where the burden of persuasion lies may make a practical difference to a magistrate or judge genuinely uncertain on the basis of what the parties have presented."); see also Schaffer v.
will be for the party bearing the burden of persuasion
Green utilized in Title VII cases is appropriate in the ADEA context." (109) However, the Court did invite confusion when it raised this issue but failed to resolve it, stating only that "it is the textual differences between Title VII and the ADEA that prevent us from applying Price Waterhouse and Desert Palace to federal age discrimination claims." (110) Based on these textual differences, the Court concluded that, in ADEA cases, the burden-shifting analysis of Price Waterhouse and Desert Palace does not apply, and, therefore, that "[t]he burden of persuasion does not shift to the employer to show that it would have taken the action regardless of age, even when a plaintiff has produced some evidence that age was one motivating factor in that decision." (111)
When the Supreme Court heard the case again in June 2008, the Court affirmed its support for City of Jackson, (114) finding for Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory and noting that an employer bears "both the burden of production and the burden of persuasion" to assert the affirmative defense that its actions were based on reasonable factors other than age.
Even assuming that the three levels of persuasion had roughly the same meaning for most people, there would be no way of confirming that judges or jurors actually applied the intended burden of persuasion, even if they had attempted to.
While the First Circuit required that the General Counsel only present evidence that union involvement was a motivating factor of the dismissal, the court's analysis indicated that the Hospital had the burden of persuasion to demonstrate that other non-protected activities were the motivation for Santiago's dismissal.
Throughout, the plaintiff retains the burden of persuasion, while the burden of production, which is managed by the court, shifts.
The Court found the parents' most plausible argument was a fairness argument: the school districts have an advantage in information, expertise, and resources and therefore should bear the burden of persuasion. (88) It concluded, however, that Congress already addressed this informational advantage when it created safeguards for the procedural rights of parents, requiring schools to share all information with them.
They added that the duress defense also resembles the defenses of self-defense, insanity, and entrapment, for which federal courts (absent a statutory enactment to the contrary) have placed the burden of persuasion upon the prosecution in conjunction with federal crimes.
interpreted to permit a state to place the burden of persuasion for