Whenever a legal case goes to a trial court, judges will look over the evidence and speak to witnesses to determine whether the defendant is responsible for the charges held against them. But after a judgment has been decided, it is not necessarily final. The defendant can choose to appeal to the higher courts in the hope of an alternative outcome. The lawyers within your region working on appeals are known as North Carolina appellate lawyers, and it is their job to prove to the appeals court that the judgment against you should be reversed.
If you’re looking for a North Carolina appellate attorney, you’re in the right place. In this article, we discuss their role, what they do, and when you need to hire one. We also offer tips on how to choose the best appellate lawyer in North Carolina for your best chance of a change of the results of the judgment.
An appellate lawyer in North Carolina is a professional attorney that specializes in appellate law. They evaluate cases that have gone to trial and since been appealed to the courts. They take the cases from trial courts and try to find an angle that the trial lawyer missed. Their purpose sounds simple – they are hoping to overturn the judgment given by a lower court or correct an error made in the case. However, this purpose is easier said than done. Their role revolves around looking at all the evidence, related laws, and conduct of others involved in the case and can be complex to do successfully.
The main job of a North Carolina appellate lawyer is to create a brief for filing before the appellate courts. This document is essentially a written argument explaining why the trial court made a mistake in its judgment of the case. It includes a review of everything that was presented in the lower courts, including citations and relevant evidence, followed by an argument as to why the judgment should be reversed. It must be written in a particular legal format to be accepted by the courts, and the more compelling the argument, the more likely courts will overturn the judgment. The lawyer may also have to make an oral argument before the court.
Anyone with a civil or criminal case should consider hiring a lawyer for appellate in North Carolina. Appeals are serious, and their outcome can have tremendous effects on your sentencing and life as a whole. Below are just some of the benefits that appointing appellate counsel will bring:
Not all North Carolina appellate attorneys are on par. And when searching for legal counsel to handle your case, you’ll want to hire the best appellate lawyer in North Carolina possible. Below are some key questions to ask before appointing a law firm:
As with all litigation, hiring a North Carolina appellate lawyer is notoriously expensive. There is also many variations between law firms besides the case complexity affecting the time and cost of the proceedings. On average, most can expect to pay around $10,000 in legal fees. However, this could easily rise to $30,000 for successful and experienced law firms handling complex cases.
Most law firms will charge for consultations. When choosing an appellate lawyer in North Carolina, make sure you check whether there are any associated fees or not. Some appellate counsel will charge a flat consultation fee, whereas others will charge you for their time at their regular hourly rate.
Trial attorneys are responsible for the initial investigation into cases and negotiate with the prosecution to try and reach a settlement. Where a settlement cannot be reached, the trial lawyer fights the case in court. On the other hand, appellate lawyers don’t search for evidence and instead look over the case proceedings thus far. They then write a written brief explaining their argument.
Most cases that go to appeal are due to a violation of the defendant’s constitutional rights with local, state, or federal governments. These can be civil cases, criminal cases, bankruptcy cases, or a range of other appeals.