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Criminal Appeals -

       An appeal is a review of your criminal case by some other court that is a higher courtthan the one that heard your matter. The purpose of an appeal is to challenge the ruling or the decision that was made by the lower court. Timing is very important and it is crucial to follow the correct procedures for an appeal.

What is an Appellate Attorney?

It is usually best to obtain the assistance of an appellate attorney as appeals are a specialized area of criminal law. It is imperative to hire an appellate attorney very early, even before your case goes to trial. A good criminal appellate attorney can persuade an audience of judges almost exclusively on written arguments that emphasize a detailed analysis of the trial testimony and the applicable law to the case. For more information on this subject read the following articles.

Appeal in Error: Common Mistakes Made in Appeals by Scott P. Stolley of Thompson & Knight LLP
What Do Appellate Attorneys Actually Do? by Howard J. Bashman

Notice of Appeals

The process for an appeal depends on whether the case is an infraction, a misdemeanor or a felony. Listed below and in this section of criminal law are the different types of appeals.

Felony - A felony is a criminal offense that can be punished by death or time in state prison. Since the trial court for the felony is the Superior Court, Unlimited Jurisdiction, the appeal would be heard by theCourt of Appeal. You have 60 days from the date of the judgment or orderto file the Notice of Appeal; a late notice will not be accepted. A death penalty conviction is appealed automatically directly to the California Supreme Court.

Misdemeanor - A misdemeanor is a criminal offense that can be punished by county jail for up to one year or by fine or by both jail and fine, but not by time in state prison. You have 30 days from the date of the judgment or order to file the Notice of Appeal. A late notice will not be accepted. You must file your Notice of Appeal at the clerk's office where the trial was heard.

Infraction - The most common type of infractions would be traffic tickets or violations of some city or county ordinance. The court that will hear your appeal is the Appellate Division of the Superior Court. The notice of appeal must be filed within 30 days after the trial court makes it judgment or order.

- Written by , Attorney at Law





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