Let’s say you’ve been to court for a criminal matter or traffic offense like reckless driving, but you don’t like the decision of the Judge. Do you have to accept that decision? The short answer is no. If, in a lower court (Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court or General District Court), the Judge makes a decision that you don’t agree with, you are entitled to what is called an appeal. Requesting an appeal means that you are asking a higher court (Circuit Court) to rehear your matter from the lower court.
This can come with some caveats. For instance, if you had an attorney represent you in the lower court, often you will have to rehire the attorney to handle the appeal (unless an appeal is included in your contract). If you did have an attorney in the lower court, you should definitely ask him or her if it would be in your best interests to file an appeal. Filing an appeal is quite simple, but time is of the essence. You have 10 days from the date of your conviction to file an appeal. This must be done by you or your attorney, in person, with the Clerk’s office of the Court your case was heard.
If you have any questions about the appeal or the appeal process, or you feel you would like to have your case reheard in the Circuit Court, feel free to give us a call at 757-656-1000 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and set up a time to speak with an attorney about the appeal process and your specific matter. We are here for you.
Please note: it is possible to appeal the Circuit’s Court decision to an even higher court, the Court of Appeals. This process is different, and will likely cost much, much more, so be sure your let your attorney know!