Murrieta Attorney For Family Law Appeals
In California, a civil judgment can be entered after a trial or by default when the party who is sued fails to appear in court. Although considered final for most purposes, a judgment can be appealed on legal grounds, such as if the trial court misapplied the law. In order for an appeal to be made, proper formalities must be followed, including filing the appeal in a timely manner and appealing to the correct court.
The entry of a judgment in your case may not be the end. Many litigants are faced with the prospect of dealing with an appeal after judgment is entered. Whether you are appealing or you are responding to an appeal, the process is often difficult for clients to understand. Let’s face it: judges and juries can make mistakes, and you could be left to deal with the consequences.
Your time to appeal an unfavorable judgment is extremely limited. If you are considering an appeal, or if you have been served with a Notice of Appeal, please contact our office right away to discuss your rights.
A default judgment is a judgment entered when a defendant fails to appear in court to contest a civil lawsuit. By failing to appear, the defendant is considered to have given up a defense. However, the case is not considered to have been decided on the merits.
Many default judgments are entered when a defendant had no notice of the pending action. This frequently occurs if the plaintiff:
- Did not have a correct address
- Failed to follow the proper procedures for serving the defendant
- Intentionally served the defendant improperly in an attempt to win a default judgment
To appeal a default judgment, a defendant needs to show two things. First, that they had no notice of the action and couldn’t have reasonably have had notice. Second, that they are appealing in a timely manner. Our Murrieta family law appeals lawyers can help you present the proper legal arguments in an effort to reverse a default judgment and have the case decided on the merits.
Whether a civil case is decided by a judge or a jury, either party — defendant or plaintiff — may appeal to have the verdict reversed or to have the award of damages modified. Unlike a trial, an appeal does not involve the presentation of evidence or deciding the facts of the case. Instead, it is a matter of purely legal arguments.
Founding attorney Andrew L. Westover is a Certified Family Law Specialist, certified by the California Board of Legal Specialization. Under his leadership and guidance, our firm works diligently to ensure that our clients’ child custody and financial interests are protected during family law proceedings, including family law appeals.