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Probative inferences or probative conclusions are those that establish something as a reasonable basis for proceeding—for the time being, on the evidence available at the moment. Probative conclusions are not established beyond a reasonable doubt, but, to use an approximately equivalent phrase, are established as prima facie likely. Their status is less precise than statistical or numerical probability conclusions, less certain than deductive conclusions, but convey more than the mere unqualified term probable. It is very common in evaluation work, as in all practical endeavors, up to and including life and death decisions, to use such conclusions when nothing stronger can be established, but clients need to go forward with some reassurance. The term probative logic derives from a legal term, although it has been ...

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