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Probability, Confidence, and Twombly's Plausibility Standard

54 Pages Posted: 30 May 2013 Last revised: 15 Jan 2016

Luke Meier

Baylor University - Law School

Date Written: January 29, 2014


This Article offers a fresh perspective on the pleading standard of plausibility. The consensus regarding plausibility is that it requires a judge to determine the probability of the plaintiff’s allegations. This perspective has led to much of the criticism of the plausibility standard. In reality, plausibility requires a judge to perform an analytically distinct inquiry, which I term a confidence analysis. Recognizing this fact does not immunize plausibility from all of the criticism it has received. It does, however, clarify the analysis required under the standard, which should alleviate many of the concerns associated with plausibility.

Keywords: Twombly, Iqbal, Tellabs, plausibility, plausible, probability, confidence, PSLRA, pleading, 7th Amendment, Suja Thomas, Luke Meier

Suggested Citation

Meier, Luke, Probability, Confidence, and Twombly's Plausibility Standard (January 29, 2014). 68 SMU Law Review 331 (2015). Available at SSRN: or

Luke Meier (Contact Author)

Baylor University - Law School ( email )

Sheila & Walter Umphrey Law Center
1114 South University Parks Drive
Waco, TX 76706
United States

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