When a party having the burden of proof provides some credible evidence establishing each essential element of the claim or defense, that party has established a prima facie case, and the burden of going forward then shifts to the opposing party. Prima facie evidence is such evidence of a fact as is sufficient to establish the existence of the fact unless and until rebutted. The party having the affirmative has the burden of establishing a prima facie case before the matter can be submitted to the jury.6
6. 11 Del. C. § 301(a) (in criminal prosecutions); Moody v. Nationwide Mut. Ins. Co., 549 A.2d 291, 292 (Del. 1988); Ebersole v. Lowengrub, 208 A.2d 495, 497 (Del. 1965).
© 2010 David L. Finger