Do You Have Grounds for an Appeal?

Criminal appellate lawyer

If you’ve been convicted of a crime, you should know you have the right to hire a criminal appeal attorney to appeal that conviction if you believe a legal error may have occurred. Once convicted and having decided to appeal, your title in the case changes from ‘defendant’ to ‘appellant.’
Filing an appeal requests that a higher court examine the record of trail proceedings to determine if an error did in fact occur that may have influenced the outcome or imposed sentence.
To clarify, criminal appeal lawyers rarely challenge the decision of a jury, specifically. The challenge is indirect, and while sometimes it may call into question something that happened during the trial itself, usually it will revolve around any legal errors made either by the prosecution or the judge during the preliminary hearing or pre-trial motions.
For those not directly involved in the judicial system, the differences between civil and criminal cases might not be obvious. Here’s a basic breakdown.
Civil Cases
Civil suits arise from an individual or entity (a government or company), i.e., “the plaintiff,” alleges that another individual or entity, i.e., the defendant, has failed to carry out some duty owed to the plaintiff. The plaintiff is usually asking for the court to demand that the duty be filled or restitution be made, or both. Additionally, civil suits can be brought into both federal and state courts. Individuals, companies, and the federal government can bring civil suits that claim violations of constitutional rights or federal statutes.
Criminal Cases
Generally speaking, someone accused of a crime gets formally charged via an indictment (for serious crimes/felonies), though misdemeanors can be charged based solely on information. It isn’t necessarily the victim’s responsibility to bring charges; if the police or other government office are aware of the crime, they can move forward with prosecution. Sometimes, criminal cases lack a specific victim. A good example of this is someone arrested for drunk driving. They may not have had an accident or injured anyone, but the offense is considered criminal because it could result in harm to others.
A good criminal appeal attorney understands the ins and outs of the system. Appellate lawyers can help you discern whether your case has clear grounds for an appeal or not — civil or criminal. Law firms for appeals can be found easily when searching by state.

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