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Should You Appeal Your Family Law Case?

Family Law

Family law can be complicated, complex and stressful. If you receive a judgment from a family law court you disagree with, you may want to file a Notice of Appeal with the court and get the judge to reconsider your case.

Understanding how to appeal a case (and whether you should appeal at all) can help you move forward with your case.

Deciding Whether to Appeal a Case (Understanding the Appellate Process)

Once you receive an order from a court, you have 45 days to file a Notice of Appeal with the court and formally appeal the case.

It's important to understand that an appeal is not a retrial. A jury will not consider your appeal, and lawyers will not present the court with new evidence (except under special circumstances).

An appeal is a review of the law by the court. Several judges will evaluate the appeal. If they believe they administered the law correctly in the original case, they will not change the final court order.

There are a few reasons people appeal cases:

  • They believe the court administered the law wrongly. This is the easiest type of appeal to win, especially if your attorney can find a precedent case that contradicts the order you received from the court.
  • They believe the court glossed over or misinterpreted substantial evidence. This is a much more complicated type of appeal to win.
  • They believe the court administration abused their powers (such as showing preferential treatment) or failed to handle the case correctly (such as failing to archive evidence). This can also be a difficult type of appeal to make a convincing argument for.

Appeals can be notoriously difficult to win. You should consult your family lawyer before pursuing an appeal.

To file an appeal in New Jersey, you will work with your attorney to fill out and file a Notice of Appeal within 45 days of receiving a court order. Once all parties involved in the case are notified of the appeal, you will receive a Notice of Entry from the court, finalizing your appeal.

You must pay $300 to the New Jersey Appellate Court to appeal the case. Your attorney will put together a record on the appeal, and compile a brief containing your argument for the appeal. The Appellate Court will consider the brief and record (also called an "Appendix") and return a final judgment post-evaluation.

To receive help from an experienced NJ appeals lawyer, contact our team at DeTomasso Law Group online or via phone at (908) 274-3028.