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balance of probabilities and criminal standard.

English translation: basic legal concepts relating to the level of proof required

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07:04 Nov 5, 2003
English to English translations [PRO]
Law/Patents / Law report
English term or phrase: balance of probabilities and criminal standard.
The issue was whether there could be a standard of proof of fact in a civil case the likelihood of suffering significant harm) that was greater than the balance of probabilities but less than the criminal standard.

What do you think the balance
of probabilities and criminal standard he is talking about here.
Kaori Myatt
France
Local time: 08:33
English translation:basic legal concepts relating to the level of proof required
Explanation:
A basic understanding of a few basic concepts of English law are needed if you are going to get to grips with this.

The standard of proof in a given case will depend upon whether the case in a civil or criminal matter.
A standard of proof describes the level of proof required in order for the case made out to be considered as proved.
In civil law, the standard of proof is that of a « balance of probabilities ».
In criminal law, that standard (of proof) is « beyond any reasonable doubt ».

You will need to look at an apropriate legal dictionary (England? US? AUstralia?) where each of these definitions will be set out clearly.


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Note added at 2003-11-05 13:47:45 (GMT)
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You’re right about a reference being useful. Now I’m in my office and not at home I have access to my legal dictionaries. So here goes.

Oxford Dictionary of Law, OUP.

“standard of proof” : The degree of proof required for any fact in issue in litigation, which is established by assessing the evidence relevant to it. In criminal cases the standard is “proof beyond reasonable doubt” (see also burden of proof) ; in civil cases (including divorce petitions) the standard is proof on a balance of probabilities.”


Curzon Dictionary of Law, FT Publishing.

“standard of proof” : In civil cases, generally proof on a preponderance of probabilities. … In criminal cases, where the burden of proof rests of the prosecution, proof beyond reasonable doubt, but where the burden of proof is on the defence, it is proof on a preponderance of probabilities…”

“balance of probabilities” : concept in the law of evidence relating to the standard of proof whereby the party upon whom the legal burden of proof rests is entitled to a verdict in his favour if he has established some preponderence of probability in his favour.”




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Note added at 2003-11-05 13:51:36 (GMT)
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Last one, which I like as it is simple :

http://www.xreferplus.com/entry.jsp?xrefid=1369965&secid=.-&...

standard of proof



In criminal cases this denotes beyond reasonable doubt; in civil cases, the balance of probabilities.
Collins Dictionary of Law, © 1996 W.J. Stewart and Robert Burgess

Selected response from:

Nikki Scott-Despaigne
Local time: 08:33
Grading comment
Thanks Nikki. I found your reference is quite good!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
5 +2basic legal concepts relating to the level of proof required
Nikki Scott-Despaigne
3 +1'burden of proof'in legal procedure and evidence
chica nueva
3more than by chancenyamuk


  

Answers


1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +2
basic legal concepts relating to the level of proof required


Explanation:
A basic understanding of a few basic concepts of English law are needed if you are going to get to grips with this.

The standard of proof in a given case will depend upon whether the case in a civil or criminal matter.
A standard of proof describes the level of proof required in order for the case made out to be considered as proved.
In civil law, the standard of proof is that of a « balance of probabilities ».
In criminal law, that standard (of proof) is « beyond any reasonable doubt ».

You will need to look at an apropriate legal dictionary (England? US? AUstralia?) where each of these definitions will be set out clearly.


--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-11-05 13:47:45 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

You’re right about a reference being useful. Now I’m in my office and not at home I have access to my legal dictionaries. So here goes.

Oxford Dictionary of Law, OUP.

“standard of proof” : The degree of proof required for any fact in issue in litigation, which is established by assessing the evidence relevant to it. In criminal cases the standard is “proof beyond reasonable doubt” (see also burden of proof) ; in civil cases (including divorce petitions) the standard is proof on a balance of probabilities.”


Curzon Dictionary of Law, FT Publishing.

“standard of proof” : In civil cases, generally proof on a preponderance of probabilities. … In criminal cases, where the burden of proof rests of the prosecution, proof beyond reasonable doubt, but where the burden of proof is on the defence, it is proof on a preponderance of probabilities…”

“balance of probabilities” : concept in the law of evidence relating to the standard of proof whereby the party upon whom the legal burden of proof rests is entitled to a verdict in his favour if he has established some preponderence of probability in his favour.”




--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-11-05 13:51:36 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Last one, which I like as it is simple :

http://www.xreferplus.com/entry.jsp?xrefid=1369965&secid=.-&...

standard of proof



In criminal cases this denotes beyond reasonable doubt; in civil cases, the balance of probabilities.
Collins Dictionary of Law, © 1996 W.J. Stewart and Robert Burgess



Nikki Scott-Despaigne
Local time: 08:33
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 26
Grading comment
Thanks Nikki. I found your reference is quite good!

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  DGK T-I: Nice~ it may help the asker to know that it is often said that 'on the balance of probabilities,something is true,false,happened,etc.'[Joke:"Beyond all reasonable doubt Nikki is correct :-)"] Also agree,Nikki's response
1 hr
  -> References sicne added, rather as evidence than for additional info as unless familiar with the basic concepts, the definitions lead down other raods relating to evidence which a highly complex field!

agree  Peter Linton: crystal clear
2 hrs
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29 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
more than by chance


Explanation:
It means that the injury was greater than by luck alone, but not great enough to warrant classification by a legal standard.

not a great analogy but maybe you will get the idea ->
A brick falls off a building and lands on someone's head, but it can't be determined that someone helped the brick to fall.


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Note added at 1 hr 42 mins (2003-11-05 08:46:34 GMT)
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errr... that should be ...but not great enough to warrant classification by a criminal standard.


nyamuk
United States
Local time: 00:33
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 58
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
'burden of proof'in legal procedure and evidence


Explanation:
I don't know if this quote will help (it shows the difference in standards of proof for civil and criminal cases - 'balance of probabilities' for civil, and 'beyond reasonable doubt' for criminal):

"Generally speaking, the burden of proving any facts which are advanced in support of any proposition lies upon the person who asserts it.

...

Naturally, just as it is impossible to demonstrate that there is any such thing as "absolute" truth, so it is equally impossible to establish any proposition by "absolute" proof. The "burden of proof" is therefore always taken to have been discharged where the facts adduced demonstrate the truth of an allegation beyond reasonable doubt, and in civil cases it will suffice if they demonstrate it upon the balance of probability. In criminal cases, however, out of fairness to the accused, the burden which is cast upon the prosecution is far more onerous than the burden which is cast upon parties to civil actions. In this context it has been authoritatively said that proof beyond "reasonable doubt" means proof to such a degree of certainty as a man would seek to reach before making an important decision in the affairs of his own life. Moreover, the prosecution must establish every material allegation in its case to this high degree of certainty; if it fails to do so at any point, the accused is usually entitled to an acquittal; for, by our law, every man is presumed to be innocent until he is proved to have been guilty."


    O'Keefe and Farrands, Introduction to New Zealand Law, 1980
chica nueva
Local time: 18:33
Native speaker of: English
PRO pts in pair: 83

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  DGK T-I: good ref (if it is Eng&Wales this ref will still apply)
1 hr
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