Understanding the California Criminal Appeals Process

An appeal is not a re-trial of the facts. Instead, appeals involve a review of the record for mistakes of law. Mistakes of law usually involve something that occurred at trial which rendered the process unfair.

You may have grounds for an appeal if:

  • The court allowed in a piece of evidence which was more prejudicial than probative
  • A jury instruction was given in such a way that violated the defendant's right to due process
  • The defense attorney's performance was so poor that the defendant was deprived of the right to counsel under the Sixth Amendment
  • The prosecutor employed arguments which rendered the trial fundamentally unfair

After a criminal conviction, there is a limited period of time in which to file a Notice of Appeal. Thus, time is of the essence. Once this window passes, you may forfeit the right to appeal your case. There are 60 days in which to file a Notice of Appeal for a felony conviction.

If you think you have grounds for an appeal, contact our Ventura criminal appeals lawyer today at (805) 210-8555. We can help you understand your legal options. Se habla espanol.

Legal Counsel For Your Appellate Case

A review of the record to discover mistakes of law in a criminal appeal in California is limited to the four corners of the record. Once our firm is retained to do an appeal, the first thing we will do is to get the record and make sure that it is complete. Next, we will conduct a thorough review of the record to spot any and all issues which arise.

Legal research and experience guide us as to what issues may be winners. An Opening Brief will be filed with the Appellate Court of the District of the conviction. The Office of the Attorney General of the State of California will respond with a Respondent's Brief. We will have the final say with a Reply Brief. And Oral Arguments follow. Finally, the Court of Appeal will issue an opinion.

Attorney Scott Bentley recently joined the California Appellate Defense Counsel as a Panel Attorney. This is an organization of defense appellate attorneys, which means he will be assigned to represent cases for indigent defendants in their appeal.

Bentley Law has experience filing and winning appeals in California Courts. Call us today at (805) 210-8555 to arrange a consultation with our criminal appeals lawyer in Ventura County or by phone.

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