Chapter

What are the Standards of Proof in Courts of Law?

L. Jonathan Cohen

in The Probable and The Provable

Published in print December 1977 | ISBN: 9780198244127
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191680748 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198244127.003.0005

Series: Clarendon Library of Logic and Philosophy

What are the Standards of Proof in Courts of Law?

Show Summary Details

Preview

This chapter describes the standard of proof in courts of law. There are two main standards for proof of fact in English and American courts. The plaintiff in a civil case must prove on the balance of probabilities, and the prosecutor in a criminal case must prove his conclusion at a level of probability that puts it beyond reasonable doubt. It also addresses the theories about judicial probability. Some philosophers have claimed that it does, some that if such a probability were measurable it would do so, and some that it is not even in principle a mathematical probability. The third of these views is the most defensible, but it has never been properly argued or substantiated hitherto.

Keywords: standard of proof; courts of law; English courts; American courts; mathematical probability; criminal case; judicial probability

Chapter.  3539 words. 

Subjects: Metaphysics

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.