Columbus, Ohio. Attorney David A. Bressman has been represented car accident victims since 1990. The best way to have a successful outcome in your personal injury claim is to understand the how's and why's of the law that applies to your claim. One of the most misunderstood aspects of a personal injury claim is the burden of proof. The person not at fault in the car accident is the "Plaintiff" in a lawsuit filed regarding injuries sustained in the car wreck. The Plaintiff has the burden of proving all the facts necessary to win the case. This will be fleshed out in further posts. However, the language below, from instructions given to a jury, will be a good jumping off point:
The burden of proof is upon the Plaintiff to prove the facts necessary for her case by a preponderance of the evidence. Preponderance of the evidence is the greater weight of the evidence; that is, evidence that you believe because it outweighs or overbalances in your mind the evidence opposed to it. A preponderance means evidence that is more probable, more persuasive, or of greater probative value. It is the quality of the evidence that must be weighed. Quality may, or may not, be identical with the greater number of witnesses.
In determining whether an issue has been proved by a preponderance of the evidence, you should consider all of the evidence, regardless of who produced it.
If the weight of the evidence is equally balanced, or if you are unable to determine which side of an issue has the preponderance, the party who has the burden of proof has not established such issue by a preponderance of the evidence.
OJI § 3.10 and 3.50 [NOTE: OJI stands for "Ohio Jury Instructions"]
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