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5 Examples of Benefit Of Doubt

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Benefit of doubt is the practice of suppressing your suspicions about a person when there is a reasonable doubt such suspicions are true. The term is associated with practical and fair methods of dealing with people. The following are illustrative examples.

Positive Assumptions

Adopting positive assumptions about people where you could just as easily adopt negative assumptions about them. If someone has an unpleasant look on their face, maybe they are just having a bad day. If someone says something mildly offensive, maybe their words just came out wrong. If someone makes a mistake, maybe they learned from it and will improve.

Trust

Trusting people you have a social or business relationship with such that you don't easily accuse them of wrong doing without solid evidence. For example, an employer who trusts an employee who often claims to be sick.

Honor System

An honor system is a set of norms and expectations based on the honesty and integrity of those involved as opposed to explicit rules and controls. In an honor system, any accusation of wrong doing is taken extremely seriously and such accusations are not made lightly without convincing evidence.

Customer is Always Right

The business principle that customers are treated with great respect. This precludes accusing customers of exaggerating the truth. For example, a department store that never challenges a customer's stated reasons for returning an item.

Beyond a Reasonable Doubt

The legal standard for the prosecution's evidence in a criminal prosecution that no reasonable person would have any doubt of guilt. Where this principle is applied, people aren't convicted of crimes because they are "probably guilty" but because there is no reasonable doubt that they are guilty.
Overview: Benefit Of Doubt
Type
Definition
The practice of not acting on a suspicion where there is reasonable doubt the suspicion is true.
Also Known As
Benefit of the doubt
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