Even if your criminal trial ends with a conviction, you may still be eligible to contest your charges and preserve your freedom. Depending on the circumstances of your case, you could file an appeal of the verdict based on a number of different grounds, ranging from procedural errors to gross miscarriage of justice.
However, not every criminal case can be appealed, and even those that qualify for an appeal could end poorly for defendants who fail to seek help from a skilled criminal defense attorney. By working with an experienced Atlanta appeals lawyer, you could argue your case more effectively and increase your chances of overturning the verdict.
The appellate process is not intended to be a second chance at a criminal trial, and a defendant cannot file an appeal simply because they disagree with the decision the court made. Instead, appeals are meant to provide defendants a chance to protest case results that came about because of some action or proceeding that violated established case law or their rights.
Some of the most common grounds that local attorneys help defendants file appeals over include but are not limited to:
In certain situations, the defendant having inadequate or incompetent legal counsel could be considered grounds for an appeal, though it is rare for a mistrial to be declared for this reason, rather than more objective issues like procedural errors or illegal actions by the prosecution.
As long as they file within 30 days of receiving a final verdict in their case, any criminal defendant in the state who wishes to file an appeal has the unassailable right to do so. Once retained, a nearby appellate lawyer could help a defendant file an appeal in the court that originally handed down a verdict in their case.
Generally, appeals in Atlanta are transferred to the state Court of Appeals, along with a brief filed by the defendant’s attorney detailing the issues they had with the verdict initially received by the defendant. In rare circumstances, criminal cases may be appealed directly to the state Supreme Court, or eventually progress there after going through lower appellate courts.
An appeal trial is not the same as a criminal trial, as no new evidence can be submitted in a defendant’s defense, and the final decision will be made by a panel of judges rather than a jury. Based on submitted documentation and oral arguments, that panel can either affirm the verdict being appealed, remand it back to the lower court to have small mistakes fixed, or vacate the verdict entirely.
Appealing a criminal verdict in Atlanta can be a complex process. Achieving a successful result often requires compelling evidence that something untoward or illegal directly resulted in an unfair case result, and only certain circumstances allow you to file an appeal in the first place.
If you believe that appealing your case is in your best interest, you should speak with a qualified Atlanta appeals lawyer before proceeding with the appellate process. To discuss the available options in your case, call today to set up a consultation.