Does your client want to file a post-divorce appeal?

By |2022-04-05T16:31:59+00:0008 May 2018|Categories: Appeals, Divorce, Family Law|


At some point in the divorce trial, you may have sensed things were not going well. Perhaps the judge took an immediate disliking to your client or overruled critical objections. As the case progresses, you may have concerns about the client’s right to appeal a decision. In fact, if your client has already expressed the desire to file an appeal, you may be directing your energy into handling the rest of the trial with an appeal in mind, including making appropriate objections as the case proceeds.

As you know, there is a limited amount of time to file an appeal in family court. In California, you have 60 days from the time the court serves your client with notice that the judgement has been filed in his or her case. If you are uncertain or lack experience in the appellate process, you may want to seek guidance from a law firm that has significant experience in this area of law.

What evidence do I present?

As with most legal decisions, eligibility for appeal does not lie with your client’s dissatisfaction with the ruling. An appeal does not retry the divorce or allow your client to offer new evidence to support his or her arguments. Instead, you will be attempting to demonstrate to the appellate court that the original divorce trial involved mistakes or improprieties. To that end, the kind of evidence you will present includes the following:

  • Transcripts and audio recordings of the lower court divorce trial
  • Any lower court documents related to the divorce
  • All evidence presented at the lower court trial
  • The brief you prepare for the appeal

When you are ready to file for an appeal, you must certify that you provided opposing counsel with all the information, documents, briefs and other items related to the lower court trial and your client’s appeal. Opposing counsel will also provide you with essential documentation.

What happens next?

In the appellate process, you will probably not present the evidence in a courtroom. Instead, a panel of judges will review the documentation you present, and the panel will render a decision about whether they believe the ruling of the lower court was valid. This is why it is imperative that your brief and documentation be as thorough and clean as possible.

Often, family law attorneys who do not frequently handle appellate work turn to their colleagues who have success in this area. It is especially helpful if an appeal lawyer has experience in family law courts.

About the Author:

Dorie Anne Rogers - The Law Offices of Dorie A. Rogers, APC
Dorie A. Rogers, a Family Law Specialist, Certified by the State Bar of California, has been an attorney since 1981 with an exclusive family law practice located in Orange County. She is accepting dissolution cases with support and property issues including the use of forensics to ascertain business value, community interests and to establish monthly case flow analysis. Ms. Rogers has substantial experience in high conflict custody litigation involving sophisticated psychological issues. She drafts premarital and postmarital agreement designed to define and establish parties' separate and community property interests. Paternity cases and domestic violence matters are considered part of her practice. Ms. Rogers is a court-approved and court-appointed to represent minor children.Ms. Rogers consults with individuals concerned about entering or exiting a relationship. She advises effective strategies for dissolution or premarital planning. Knowledge is power and good planning affords better results.Specialties: Family Law Specialist, Certified by the State Bar of California
Go to Top