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An appeal is a request for a higher court to review a lower court’s decision. The appellate court reviews the record of what happened in the lower court and makes a ruling based on the attorney’s arguments. Nothing new can be added to the record. If you have new information, that is handled at the trial court level with a motion for a new trial. Appeals are handled by lawyers who excel at research and writing. An appellate attorney can argue that the lower court’s decision should be reversed because they got it wrong, or an appellate attorney can argue that the lower court’s decision should be affirmed because they got it right. The higher court makes its decision solely on the record and the written briefs submitted to the court.We have extensive experience with appellate advocacy, even conducting training sessions for other lawyers learning how to do appeals. We take the time necessary to comb through large volumes of transcripts looking for appealable errors and because of our experience, we can spot important issues quickly so that we can begin preparing our arguments. Our experience with appeals also informs our trial practice because we are adept at properly preserving issues for potential appeals.

Each appellate court is beholden to the court above it, reaching all the way up to the United States Supreme Court. These justices are persuaded by great scholarship and legal thinking. The more concise and intellectual one’s arguments and the greater the number of errors made by opposing counsel, the more likely they are to reverse the lower court. They are not persuaded by catch phrases or some of the more fanciful things that might sway a jury or the court of public opinion.

Representative Cases

Case remanded for new sentencing. The client was convicted of a white-collar crime in Charlotte, North Carolina for cigarette theft and money laundering. Working with co-counsel, we convinced the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals the trial court erred in calulcating the amount of damages and the case was remanded for new sentencing.

Reversal of client's double-murder convictions. We successfully argued trial judge engaged in improper conduct by failing to remove himself despite conflict of interest with the prosecutor's office. The Supreme Court reversed the client's convictions for murder, armed robbery, and related charges.

Reversal of client’s stalking conviction. We successully argued the State had failed to present sufficient evidence at trial to sustain a conviction. As a result, the client could not be tried again on the charges.

Reversal of client’s DUI conviction. The appellate court agreed the jury received an improper jury instruction shifting the burden of proof. On remand, we also represented the client and were able to negotiate a reduction in the charge to a minor traffic violation.

Reversal of client’s aggravated assault conviction. We successfully convinced the Court of Appeals that the trial court failed to properly consider the client’s motion for speedy trial.

Reversal of denial of Motion to Suppress. Working with co-counsel, we successfully argued to the Court of Appeals that the trial court improperly denied a pre-trial motion to suppress. The client had been illegally detained and searched near his home as a result of an anonymous tip that an officer had received. Based on the illegal search, officers obtained a search warrant, and were able to search the client’s home. The Court of Appeals agreed that this violated the client’s Fourth Amendment rights, and reversed the lower court’s ruling.