So you’ve just wrapped up a painful family law case, and it didn’t go your way. Naturally, you feel hard done by and, since this is a family matter, there are a lot of emotions at play. Should you call upon the services of an appeals court law firm in California? If you have a firm conviction that the judgment was reached in error, or misapplication of California law, or outright prejudice, then you have every right to appeal – but you need to be sure of your argument. You and your legal support must weigh up the costs involved, and the strength of your appeal in terms of evidence showing legal errors or abuse of discretion. Your family lawyer may well advise you not to appeal as it isn’t always worth the trouble and expense. If, after considering all the facts, you and your counsel are convinced the case is strong enough, then the first, all-important step is to file the Notice of Appeal.
Deadline to file the Notice of Appeal
The notice must be filed in a timely manner. The deadlines are strictly enforced because they are jurisdictional. If you fail to file your appeal in time, the court will not have jurisdiction to consider your appeal. You are usually given 60 days to file the notice. If you miss this deadline, you will not be allowed to appeal, regardless of how strong your case may be.
Contents of the Notice of Appeal
The Notice of Appeal itself is a short form that is easily and quickly filled in without any major preparations needed. It contains the name, state bar number and contact details of the lawyer, the names of the plaintiff and respondent, and indicates what type of judgment is being appealed. The real work is in the brief that is presented to the justices for deliberation. This document must contain the necessary evidence of the errors made in the family court ruling, presented in a clear, concise and convincing manner. If the Notice of Appeal is your foot in the door of the appeals court, then your brief is the strength and leverage required to push the door open. Before proceeding with an appeal, we will first analyze the judgment handed down by the family court, and we need to find clear evidence of legal error or abuse of discretion. If that evidence is there, we can create a brief that will be difficult to counter or dismiss.
If you’re determined to pursue a family court appeal, contact our appeals court law firm in California. Our appeals court lawyers will examine the specifics of your case and the judgment handed down, and determine whether you have a good basis to pursue your appeal. Book a consultation today.