standard of proof

Legal Definition of standard of proof 

: the level of certainty and the degree of evidence necessary to establish proof in a criminal or civil proceeding the standard of proof to convict is proof beyond a reasonable doubt — see also clear and convincing, preponderance of the evidence — compare burden of proof, clear and convincing evidence at evidence, reasonable doubt

Note: Preponderance of the evidence is the least demanding standard of proof and is used for most civil actions and some criminal defenses (as insanity). Clear and convincing proof is a more demanding standard of proof and is used in certain civil actions (as a civil fraud suit). Proof beyond a reasonable doubt is the most demanding standard and the one that must be met for a criminal conviction.

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