WHAT does the court mean when it refers to “the preponderance of the evidence?”
This is the legal standard by which the plaintiffs in this case are required to prove their claim against the defendant Brian Dailey. It means that the total sum of all of the evidence presented must favor the plaintiff's evidence as to each and every single requirement for her claim against the defendant (more than the evidence favors the defendant’s side of the case). In an effort to quantify what this standard requires, in essence it simply means that the cumulative “weight” of all of the evidence must balance at least more slightly in favor of the plaintiffs’ case (i.e., greater than 50%) rather than in favor of the defendant's version of the case. Most (although not quite all) Tort causes of action utilize the “preponderance of the evidence” standard. By comparison in Criminal Law, the standard of proof for most criminal cases is said to be “beyond a reasonable doubt.” This standard requires that the State must prove its case against an accused defendant with a significantly greater amount of the total weight of the evidence.