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First Things First: File the Notice of Appeal

Posted on 4 September, 2013 at 11:25

At the end of a case there is a winner and a loser.  People on the losing end of a case often become emotionally upset.  The losing party begins questioning everything about their case.  Was their lawyer prepared?   Did the judge issue the correct rulings during trial?  Did the other side play fair?


The losing party mourns their loss day after day - week after week - month after month.  This is not the attitude or mind set you need for a successful appeal.   Your case was lost at the trial level, but that does not mean it is over.   Your case can be won at the appellate level.  However, you cannot win an appeal without first starting an appeal.  To start an appeal, in most states, you need to file a Notice of Appeal.  Stop licking your wounds, and start preparing for your appeal.


A Notice of Appeal is a relatively simple document.  It is generally only a few pages long and it is usually filed in the trial court.  In certain courts, additional papers such as a Pre-Argument Statement or a Request for Appellate Division Intervention must be filed with the Notice of Appeal as well.


The Notice of Appeal signifies to the court and the opposing side that you intend to appeal the judgment or decision of the trial court. If you are complaining about your loss in the trial court and worrying about the future, you will forget the most important thing in the present.  That is, file the Notice of Appeal.  This simple legal document starts the appellate process.   Obviously, you cannot win an appeal without starting an appeal.   Even if you decide not to pursue your appeal, at least you have preserved your appellate rights.


Remember, many cases that were lost at the trial level were reversed on appeal.   You may very well have an appellate victory in your future, but no one has ever won an appeal without first filing a Notice of Appeal.   Get up and get down to the court to file your Notice of Appeal.


Written by:  Alexandra C. Siskopoulos, Esq.

Telephone:   (646) 942-1798

Email:          [email protected]


If you have a civil appeal or criminal appeal and would like to speak with an appellate attorney at Siskopoulos Law Firm, LLP, contact us at either (646) 942-1798 or (617) 959-1628.


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Categories: Appeals 101