The Best Evidence Rule

Will Your Documents Be Upheld in a Court of Law?

Having the highest probative value means it has the greatest weight that can be given to a document in terms of authentic value, compared to any other document presented in a court of law.


For a document, the probative value is evaluated in relation to The Best Evidence Rule. 

  • The more authentic a document is and the more its contents can be linked to its creator (or can prove that an individual had the authority to represent the creator of the document if the creator is not the individual), the greater the weight of its probative value because it tends to prove that it is the original.
  • Based on legal principles, the notion of document integrity is often associated with authenticity, that which is often found in both case law and evidence law. 
  • Authenticity is a key element that forges a link between the creator and the integrity of the content.

A document is then legally authentic once it can concurrently link evidence of the document creator to its content. This condition must remain true throughout the lifecycle of the document.