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Probative Value

Definition - What does Probative Value mean?

Probative value refers to the extent to which a piece of evidence tends to prove something. This term is commonly used by attorneys during a court setting such as a motion or a trial.

Justipedia explains Probative Value

Rule 401 of the Federal Rules of Evidence requires that in order for a piece of evidence to be admitted into court, it must be found to be relevant.

For example, in a murder trial, evidence that the defendant had an argument with the victim would be considered probative. However, evidence that the defendant had an argument with an unrelated neighbor would not be probative.

If evidence is found to have no probative value, it will not be admitted. Irrelevant evidence that does not prove anything is misleading to juries and could be cause for a mistrial.

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