What is an Appeal?
An Appeal is a request to a higher court asking that a final judgment or other ruling of a lower court be reversed.
WHY WOULD A CASE BE REVERSED ON APPEAL?
A case will be reversed on appeal if something went wrong in the way the lower court judge or jury applied the law.
ARE CASES OFTEN REVERSED ON APPEAL?
In most cases, an Appeals Court respects the existing decision.
HOW DOES THE APPEALS PROCESS WORK?
The Appeals process is available for both civil and criminal cases. In a civil case either side may appeal the ruling or judgment of the court. In a criminal case, the defendant may appeal a guilty verdict or the sentence imposed, and the government may appeal in limited cases if a defendant is found not guilty. Either side in a criminal case may appeal with respect to the sentence that is imposed after a guilty verdict.
- In order to file an appeal you must demonstrate that the trial court or administrative agency made a legal error that affected the decision in the case.
- The court of Appeals makes its decision solely based on the record of the case established by the trial court or agency. Generally no additional evidence or witnesses are presented.
- Arguments are presented to a single judge or a panel of judges in writing in a document referred to as a brief.
- Cases may be decided on the basis of briefs alone while others may be granted an oral argument before the court. Oral arguments are structured and short (usually no more than 30 minutes).
- The Court of Appeals will render its decision. Typically the Court of Appeals is the final word unless it sends the case back to the trial court for additional proceedings, or the parties ask the U.S. Supreme Court or the Canadian Supreme Court to review the case.
- In some cases the decision may be reviewed en banc, which means by a larger group of judges (usually all) of the Court of Appeals.
- If you lose in a Federal Court of Appeals or in the highest court of a state you may file a petition asking the Supreme Court to review the case. Be advised that the Supreme Court does not have to grant a review unless there are special circumstances which require it.
WHAT HAPPENS IF I WIN MY APPEAL?
If you win your Appeal the court will either reverse the case and change the verdict or remand the case, meaning they will send it back to the lower court with instructions.
If you are considering an Appeal contact the C2 Global Law Appeals Lawyers. We will evaluate your case, advise on whether or not you have adequate grounds to proceed and if so, provide you with the best representation possible.