What Does Burden of Proof Mean?
Burden of proof in a legal proceeding refers to the obligation to prove the facts of the case. In a civil action, the burden of proof usually rests with the person who has brought the suit, the plaintiff. In a criminal proceeding, the obligation to prove that the defendant is guilty of the alleged crime lies with the prosecutor, representing the government.
Determining whether an individual has met their burden of proof is usually a question of fact. A jury or judge will decide whether the information provided demonstrates that an assertion is true or not. Less commonly, a judge may determine as a matter of law that the information provided in support of an asserted fact is so lacking that it cannot be deemed true.