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What is the Briginshaw Test?

Briginshaw v Briginshaw (1938) 60 CLR 336 considered how the requisite standard of proof should operate in civil proceedings.


The case affirmed that the standard of proof that applies to all civil matters is the balance of probabilities.


Briginshaw v Briginshaw is a landmark case in Australian law, which established the standard of proof required in civil cases where serious allegations are made.


The case involved a dispute between a married couple over the ownership of certain property.


The wife alleged that her husband had used fraud and undue influence to obtain the property, while the husband denied the allegations.


The case was heard in the Family Court of Australia.


In its judgment, the court recognized that serious allegations of fraud and undue influence require a higher standard of proof than ordinary civil cases.

The court stated that the evidence must be "clear, cogent and convincing" in order to establish the allegations.


This means that the evidence must be strong enough to satisfy the court that it is more likely than not that the allegations are true.


The Briginshaw standard has since been applied in many other cases in Australia, and has become a key principle in the law of evidence.


It is often cited in cases involving allegations of fraud, sexual abuse, and other serious misconduct.

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