Presumptions Of Legitimacy and and Illegitimate Presumptions

For C.S., who brought Michael H. to my attention and noted its importance to modern American paternity jurisprudence. We have recently been discussing conclusive presumptions in law and Halachah; an oft-touted example of such a presumption in American law, apparently originating in the English common law tradition, is the presumption of legitimacy, the presumption that …

Terminally Ill Animals and Dead Horses

Rashba and Rivash A celebrated assertion of a conclusive presumption in Halachah is the position of Rashba and Rivash that Hazal’s declaration that a טריפה cannot live more than twelve months is absolutely and indubitably true, and that if witnesses testify to a counterexample, we flatly deny their assertion, maintaining that Hazal are certainly correct …

Our Minds Are Made Up, Don’t Confuse Us With Evidence

For C.S., who hates evidence. The law has the concept of conclusive or irrebuttable presumptions, which are assumed to be absolutely true, regardless of any evidence to the contrary. Does Halachah have such a concept? The answer is apparently yes, at least theoretically, although there may not be any actual, normative examples. One relevant Talmudic …