(f) Primary and Secondary Evidence .
Closely related to the best evidence rule is the concept of primary and secondary evidence. Primary evidence is evidence which on its face proves a fact. For example, the divorce certificate is primary evidence of a divorce. Secondary evidence is evidence which makes it more likely that the fact sought to be proven by the primary evidence is true, but cannot do soon its own face, without any external reference. In the above example, church records showing that an individual was divorced at a certain time would be secondary evidence of the divorce. You will often encounter situations in which primary evidence is unavailable. This gives rise to a presumption of ineligibility, which is the applicant or petitioner’s burden to overcome. Title 8 CFR 103.2((2) sets out the procedures relating to unavailability of documents. A petitioner or applicant cannot simply assert that the primary evidence does not exist. The absence of a primary record, instead, must be proven either:
· By a written statement from the appropriate issuing authority attesting to the fact that no record exists or can be located, or that the record sought was part of some segment of records which were lost or destroyed; or
· By evidence (such as an affidavit) "that repeated good faith attempts were made to obtain the required document or record."