(a) Death Not to Be Presumed from Mere Absence.--In any action under this Chapter, where the death of a person and the date thereof, or either, is in issue the fact that he has been absent from his place of residence, unheard of for seven years, or for any other period, creates no presumption requiring the judge or the jury to find that he is now deceased. The issue shall be decided by the judge as one of fact upon the evidence.
(b) Exposure to Specific Peril to Be Considered.--If during such absence the person has been exposed to a specific peril of death, this fact shall be considered by the judge; or if there be a jury, shall be sufficient evidence to be submitted to the jury.
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