burden of persuasion

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The obligation of a party to introduce evidence that persuades the factfinder, to a requisite degree of belief, that a particular proposition of fact is true.  In civil cases, a party's burden is usually "by a preponderance of the evidence."  In criminal cases, the prosecution's burden is "beyond a reasonable doubt."

The burden of persuasion is comprised of two elements: the facts a party must plead and prove in order to prevail on a particular issue; and how persuasively the party must prove those facts.