The Burden of Proof
The U.S. Supreme Court has explained that under “[c]onventional rules of civil litigation … parties … need only prove their case by a preponderance of the evidence and that [e]xceptions to this standard are uncommon.”13 Because the preponderance-of-the evidence standard results in a roughly equal allocation of the risk of error between litigants, courts will presume that this standard is applicable in civil actions between private litigants unless particularly important individual interests or rights are at stake.
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