Appellate Lawyers Tampa FL

Hiring an Appellate Lawyer to Appeal a Criminal Conviction

Appellate Lawyers Tampa FLIf you believe an error was made during your trial, consider hiring an appellate lawyer from The McKinney Law Group. Anyone who has been convicted of a felony crime in the state of Florida can file a criminal appeal if they believe a legal mistake was made during court hearings or the trial. Appellate lawyers in Tampa FL such as Damien McKinney can clarify by when your appeal must be filed. It’s critical to file your appeal before the deadline expires. We encourage you to contact us for a free case review.

At The McKinney Law Group, we understand how devastating a criminal conviction can be, especially when a conviction was unfounded. Having more than a decade of experience, we are confident in our ability to aggressively appeal a criminal charge. Regardless of your conviction or how complex your case might be, we want to know about it. Damien McKinney may be able to successfully argue that you deserve a new trial. For a free consultation with one of the appellate lawyers in Tampa FL who can truly make a difference, call us.

Understanding the Process of a Criminal Appeal

An appeal is a legal argument that is presented to a higher court, such as the Florida Supreme Court, or a Federal Circuit Court. The objective of an appeal is to determine whether or not the court made an error in the interpretation of the law(s) used in your own case. During an appeal, a panel of judges will review the trial proceedings to determine whether or not errors were made. If they discover that a critical error occurred, they have the legal authority to reverse the conviction. Examples of trial errors include:

  • Excluding important evidence for the defense.
  • Allowing evidence that should not have been allowed.
  • Confusing the jury.
  • Giving the jury false information.
  • Juror or prosecutorial misconduct.
  • Inappropriate sentencing.
  • Constitutional violations.

A criminal appeal can help the defendant get another chance to prove their innocence or receive a fair and just trial; however, it is a complex process with which you will need assistance from experienced appellate lawyers in Tampa FL.

The Appeal

A criminal appeal is not the same as a trial. It begins when appellate lawyers in Tampa FL file a “notice of appeal” in the trial court. Once the trial transcripts are prepared, your lawyer from The McKinney Law Group will review the documents to identify any potential legal errors. If and when they are discovered, they will file a “brief” with the appeals court. This will identify the errors and present an argument to the court as to why the conviction should be overturned.

Petitioning for Writ of Habeas Corpus

A habeas corpus petition is like an appeal; however, it often involves evidence that was not included in a defendant’s trial. Common arguments in this petition are that the conviction should be overturned because new evidence was discovered or ineffective counsel was prevalent. Your appellate lawyers in Tampa FL can help you to determine whether or not you have grounds to file a habeas corpus petition or a criminal appeal.

Trial Reviews

When reviewing a court’s decision, appellate lawyers in Tampa FL can only reference information that is in the official record.This record includes transcripts, details of proceedings, and physical evidence that was admitted during the trial. If there is no official transcript, appellate lawyers in Tampa FL might advise that your chance of winning an appeal is very slim.

This is especially true in family law cases where the dispute is generally based on facts rather than legal issues. When this happens, the appellant has to prove that the lower court abused its discretion by ruling as it did. This is almost impossible to prove without the official trial transcript. That is because the burden of proof is on the appellate lawyers in Tampa FL to provide evidence that the court trial was in error.

Exceptions to the Rule

There are exceptions to the rule when a transcript does not exist. States are obligated to have a special interest in protecting the rights of children. If a Court order that establishes child support does not contain certain findings, the Court’s ruling must be reversed and changed regardless of whether or not a transcript exists. Appellate lawyers in Tampa FL may argue this point on your behalf if this is the case.

Another exception is when attorney’s fees are awarded and the court does not include sufficient findings in the written order. A mandate by the Supreme Court states that specific findings must be present in order to substantiate such order and without such, the order is deemed erroneous. Your appellate lawyers in Tampa FL can advise you as to whether or not this applies in your case.

Alternative Appeals Process

Another way to file an appeal without an official transcript from a court reporter is for your appellate lawyers in Tampa FL to submit a statement of facts or a statement of evidence that specifies what transpired during the hearing. This statement becomes a part of the official record and can in some instances be sufficient to submit to the appellate court for review. This statement must be meticulously written or it will not be enough information to substitute for an official transcript. Putting this information together after the fact is time consuming and can be very expensive as a result. Trying after the fact to get information from those involved in the case (including expert witnesses) can be challenging at best.

The Value of a Court Reporter

In most instances it is worth the money to hire a court reporter. The official written transcript generated by the court reporter is important to ensure the accuracy of testimonies, clarify the judge’s decision, and be available to take to an appellate court should it be necessary. Your appellate lawyers in Tampa FL from The McKinney Law Group work with a network of legal professionals which includes court reporters. They can provide more information about how they choose court reporters with whom to work.

If you would like to know more about how to appeal a court’s decision on your case, contact the appellate lawyers Tampa FL residents choose from The McKinney Law Group.

The McKinney Law Group: An Appellate Lawyer You Can Trust

If you are ready to know more about appealing your conviction, we encourage you to call us as soon as possible. For a free consultation with one of the appellate lawyers Tampa FL residents turn to for justice, call The McKinney Law Group today.