New Jersey Attorney Skilled in Appellate Proceedings

Often, a trial is long and stressful. After going through a trial, you may not want to continue going through court proceedings. However, if you lose in trial court or if your case is dismissed, your case is not necessarily over. If a judge has made an error, you may be able to appeal for a different outcome, so it is important not to get discouraged or quit. Appeals can be filed in civil and criminal matters. New Jersey appellate lawyer Raymond Grimes at the Grimes Law Firm may be able to represent you in a civil or criminal appeal.

Civil Appeals

You can bring an appeal as of right to New Jersey’s Appellate Division within 45 days of a lower court’s objectionable judgment or within 45 days of when an order is entered under Rules 4:47 and 2:4-1(a). The New Jersey Appellate Division can extend your time to appeal for 30 days from the judgment or order, but only when the notice of appeal or notice of certification was actually served and filed within the extended time under Rule 2:4-4(a). This can happen only through a motion that shows that there is good cause and that there is no prejudice to the parties from the extension.

We will need to review the record carefully to determine whether any errors were made at the lower court level, and we will need to conduct research to be able to argue why the court’s decision was in error. An error could involve the granting or denial of a pretrial motion, incorrect jury instructions, a failure to admit or exclude certain important evidence, or a failure to follow appropriate jury selection procedures. An appellate attorney in New Jersey can determine the appropriate grounds for an appeal.

You should be aware that filing a notice of appeal will not stop the enforcement of the final judgment, decision, or order that is being appealed. To stop enforcement, it will be necessary for us to move to stay the final judgment, decision, or order.

Criminal Appeals

Your freedom is at stake in criminal matters, so it is vital to hire a skilled criminal appellate attorney as soon as possible if you need to file an appeal. Similar to civil appeals, you have 45 days from the date of your sentence to ask for appellate review of a Superior Court conviction. Importantly, if you were convicted in municipal court, you will get only 20 days from the sentencing date to ask for appellate review of the municipal court decision.

A criminal appeal is not a separate trial. Instead, it is a proceeding in which your attorney will explain why the court convicted or sentenced you in error. As a defendant who is appealing, you have the burden of identifying the error in how the lower court handled your case. This requires your New Jersey appellate attorney to conduct a careful review of the lower court record. Perhaps the judge granted or denied a pretrial motion, negatively affecting your position in the criminal trial. Or perhaps the judge should have granted a judgment of acquittal but did not because of a legal error. It may be possible to obtain a reversal by filing an appeal.

An appellate court reaches a decision on an appeal by looking at the record and the written briefs filed by both parties to the appeal. Therefore, if you are challenging a conviction or a sentence, you will need to explain which legal error or errors were made to reach that conviction or sentence. There are various standards for whether an error is significant enough to warrant a reversal of your conviction. For example, if an error was not brought to the lower court’s attention, the appellate court will not reverse the decision unless you can show a “plain error.” This is an error that is clearly capable of producing an unjust result.

Consult a Skillful Appellate Lawyer in New Jersey

If you need to challenge the outcome of a civil or criminal proceeding, it is vital to retain an experienced attorney. At the Grimes Law Firm, we handle civil and criminal appeals for people in Neshanic Station and Somerville, throughout Somerset County, and elsewhere in New Jersey and the tri-state area. You can call us at (908) 371-1066 or contact us by completing our online form.

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