burden of proof

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Related to Clear and convincing: Standard of proof

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 ?
Pennsylvania pending legislation: HB 1305 would disallow deductions for interest and intangible expenses/ costs paid to related members, unless the corporation proves by clear and convincing evidence that the transaction creating the expenses did not have avoidance of Pennsylvania tax as a principal purpose.
Rhode Island introduced legislation: SB 794, which did not pass, would have disallowed deductions for interest and intangible expenses/costs paid to related members, unless: (1) the corporation established by a preponderance of the evidence that, during the same tax year, the related member paid or accrued such expense to an unrelated party and the transaction giving rise to such expenses/costs did not have avoidance of Rhode Island tax as a principal purpose; (2) the corporation established by clear and convincing evidence that the adjustments were unreasonable; or (3) the corporation and tax administrator enter into a written agreement to use an alternative apportionment method.