The appellate process in Texas can be very complex, consisting of numerous rules specific to appellate procedure, so it is best to find a dedicated appeals lawyer who has deep experience in the process. Even judges make mistakes. If you are dissatisfied with a court order, you may be considering filing an appeal.
Experienced criminal lawyers in Midland represent appellants and appellees in criminal and civil courts on a wide range of underlying subject matters. If you are another law firm in need of appellate work, Midland appeals lawyers will lend their expertise without overstepping the parameters of their representation.
Criminal Appeals Process
After a long and difficult criminal case, it can be devastating to not receive the verdict a potential client was hoping for. Filing an appeal is a review by a court to determine whether or not the result or evaluation of the case was fair. The appellate court will scrutinize the trial judge’s actions and determine whether any of the judge’s rulings were incorrect.
Role of an Appellate Court
It is not the appellate court’s job to determine guilt or innocence. Rather, the court will review the evidence presented at the trial court and make a ruling on whether that evidence supports the verdict. If someone is interested in appealing their conviction, the very first step is to file a notice of appeal with the clerk’s office of the court that held the trial. Someone has 30 days from the date of their sentencing to file a notice of appeal for a state case.
Federal appeals require the notice of appeal to be filed within 10 days. A Midland appeals lawyer can work with potential clients to meet these deadlines to ensure the individual’s right to an appeal. The attorney can then file an appellate brief to which the state may respond and the court will consider the appeal. If the appeal is successful, an acquittal may be ordered.
Civil Appeals Process
As with criminal cases, a notice of appeal must be filed to appeal a civil trial court’s ruling. In civil cases, the deadlines for filing a notice of appeal vary among 20-, 30-, and 90-day deadlines. In some circumstances, deadlines may be extended. It is important to consult with a Midland appeals lawyer before losing the right to an appeal.
The appellant’s brief can be filed, followed by the other side’s appellee’s brief. An appellant brief will explain to the appellate court why the case should be reversed. The appellee’s brief will argue that the lower court’s judgment was correct.
After the court of appeals issues its opinion on whether the lower court’s ruling should be reversed or affirmed, the losing party has 45 days to file a “petition for review” to the Texas Supreme Court. The Texas Supreme Court may decide to hear the case, but there is no guarantee. Most cases end at the court of appeals level and do not make it to the Texas Supreme Court.
Contacting a Lawyer
Given the strict deadlines and complex procedures, it is vital that a potential appellant contacts an appeals lawyer as soon as possible. A Midland appeals lawyer will work closely with you to become intimate with your case and fight for the best possible outcome.