After a verdict is rendered in a court case, you will often hear one-party state that they plan to appeal the decision. However, it’s not a simple process.
There are certain conditions under which an appeal can be made for an appellate court to review and change the decision of a lower court.
Understanding the appeal process
An appeal isn’t a retrial of the case. The appellate courts don’t consider new evidence. Instead, they review the record of the lower court’s proceedings to determine if significant errors affected the case’s outcome. If so, they may revise the lower court’s decision.
Some of the most common grounds for appeal include:
- Legal errors such as improper instructions given to the jury or the admission or exclusion of evidence that should not have been admitted or excluded
- A factual error where the verdict is not supported by the evidence presented
- Abuse of discretion happens when a judge makes an arbitrary, capricious, or unreasonable decision based on the evidence
- Ineffective assistance of counsel can be used if the defendant’s attorney was incompetent in representing their client, such as failing to investigate the case properly or making significant mistakes during the trial
- Constitutional error where rights were violated, including the right to a fair trial or the right against self-incrimination
The appeals process in New York State is a multi-step procedure that begins with filing a Notice of Appeal with the court and the other side. There is a 30-day deadline to file after receiving the Order or Judgement with Notice of Entry.
It is a complex process and requires an in-depth understanding of New York’s Court of Appeals. Having assistance in reviewing and filing court documents provides the best chance for a positive outcome in your appeal.