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The proof is in the pudding.
01 August 2019  | Dries Knoetze | Views: 573

In my practice, being mostly litigation, I have established that the most clients struggle to understand the burden of proof in litigation matters.

I want to make use of this opportunity to maybe enlighten some of the members of the public out there, who struggle with this concept.

In a civil matter, a party needs to prove their claim on a balance of probabilities, which is a complex way of saying that the court will evaluate the evidence tendered and establish which parties' version is more likely true. 

In a criminal matter the state must prove their case i.e. that the accused is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, which means that there must be no doubt in the mind of the Magistrate that the accused is guilty of the offence.

It is also so, that the party who makes the allegation, either the State in a criminal matter or the Plaintiff in a civil matter, must prove that allegation.

Very often than not I am confronted with clients who make allegations of fraud, corruption and various other allegations for example alleging that services rendered was rendered in an un-workmanlike manner against another party, but fails to provide any supporting evidence to substantiate these allegations.

Without the allegation being substantiated by evidentiary documents and/or proof, a litigant will not be successful with his claim.

I hope that the above will provide some perspective on what is required when litigating.