Statewide Criminal Appeals Lawyer Los Angeles

What should you do if convicted? Unless you are satisfied with being found guilty after trial or with your sentence, you will want to appeal your case. In California, you must appeal your case within 30 days of being sentenced. No exceptions. There are many levels to an appeal.

What is an Appeal? A criminal appeal is basically a review of the trial to determine whether legal rulings that were made by the judge affected the outcome of the trial. An appeal can also be made that your lawyer provided ineffective assistance of counsel or that the prosecutor committed misconduct in the case. Except in rare cases, the court does not review the jury verdict to determine whether it thinks it is correct.

The first level of appeal is in the District Court of Appeal for your area. In Los Angeles, it’s the Second District. If your appeal is denied, you may then appeal to the California Supreme Court. You have ten days to file that appeal after the Court of Appeal decision becomes final. No late filings are accepted. An appeal in the Supreme Court can only review issues raised in the Court of Appeal. You can’t add any issues.

If your appeal is denied in the California Supreme Court, you may now appeal your case to the federal courts on issues that involve only U.S. Constitutional questions. They will not accept any issues that deal with state law. Again, you can’t raise any new issues in federal court that the state courts did not review.

Because of this fact, it is extremely important that if you are going to appeal our trial result, that your attorney “federalizes” the issues so that you can appeal in the federal courts. Generally, appointed public attorneys do NOT federalize cases. There is no Public Defender’s office for appeals, but there is a panel of lawyers that take these appeals on a rotation basis and they don’t get paid to preserve your federal issues for later appeals. This is crucial especially for cases with long sentences. Remember, you get what you pay for.

Mr. Melnik has been handling criminal appeals and writing briefs for over 20 years for both state and federal courts. He has been successful in many cases and has argued cases before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals and California Supreme Court. He is able to represent you for any appeal of misdemeanor or felony case in any county of California.

Mr. Melnik regularly receives referrals from other lawyers, and works hard for each client. If you want to put his experience and reputation to work for you, please contact him using the Contact Us form.

Contact Information

Law Offices of Todd Melnik
20920-B Warner Center Lane
Woodland Hills, CA 91367
Telephone: 818-995-7777