Statutory Presumption Law and Legal Definition

Statutory presumption means a rebuttable or decisive presumption created by a statute. It does not shift the burden of proof. It is merely an evidentiary rule whereby the accused must go forward with an explanation to rebut the permissive presumption. A statutory presumption cannot be sustained:

if there be no rational connection between the fact proved and the ultimate fact presumed; or

if the inference of the one from proof of the other is arbitrary because of lack of connection between the two in common experience.

In State v. Haremza, 213 Kan. 201 (Kan. 1973), the court observed that “Statutory presumptions are ordinarily rebuttable. A rebuttable statutory presumption governs only the burden of going forward with the evidence and, even when it operates against the defendant, it does not alter the ultimate burden of proof resting upon the prosecution, nor deprive the defendant of the benefit of the presumption of innocence.”