Anyone who has been convicted of a crime in America has the right to an appeal. It’s not a trial like on TV, but rather a process where a higher court reviews a lower court’s decision to determine legal error. This course of action has many complicated procedures and steps, so you will want a criminal appeals lawyer in Chester County with a keen legal mind and expertise in the appellate process.
The Criminal Appeal Process
An appeals attorney will argue for you that the jury’s decision and/or the sentence imposed were reached due to key legal mistakes. So, when we represent you as the appellant (the person appealing), we will demonstrate to the court the errors that were made during the trial. And because of those errors, the case should be dismissed or you should be re-tried or re-sentenced.
When the appellate court considers an appeal, it only looks at the record of the proceedings in the trial court. No new facts or evidence can be added, and if you think your trial lawyer’s performance was subpar, that’s irrelevant.
What’s in the record then? It’s basically the court reporter’s transcripts of everything said by the judge, attorneys or witnesses during the trial. The record also includes documents, photos or objects admitted into evidence throughout the trial.
As a top Chester County appeals attorney, we are skilled at researching and writing the legal briefs that are submitted to the appeals court. These briefs present the facts and laws, illustrating why the conviction or sentence should be overturned in your favor. The appellate court then examines the record and written briefs to reach a decision on the criminal appeal.
And keep in mind, you might require a criminal appeals lawyer even if you won your original case. For instance, if your opponent opts to file an appeal, you’ll need someone to write a brief that defends the trial court’s decision and explains why the court ruled correctly.
How to Get Started
If you’re considering appealing your case or need us to help uphold the verdict, call our office now for a free consultation. We’ll review the judgment and records from your case to determine the viability of an appeal. We’ll also carefully walk you through all the requirements and deadlines of the process, starting with filing a notice of appeal within 30 days of sentencing.
Our team of Chester County appeals attorneys can bring a new perspective to your case built on years of experience in analyzing a trial record for any and all potential errors or issues to appeal.