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Going through a divorce can be a long and painful process. It’s not uncommon for one party to be unhappy with one or more of the court’s decisions regarding alimony, child support, child custody arrangements, or property division.
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YOU CAN FILE AN APPEAL
If you feel that the court ruled in error or if you disagree or are unhappy with one or more of the court’s the decisions reached after your trial, you can file an appeal, subject to certain legal standards and strict procedural criteria.
In divorce cases, either ex-spouse has the right to timely file an appeal if they fee l that their case was wrongly decided, meaning the court committed error.
Once an appeal is filed, the entire case is reviewed by the Georgia Court of Appeals or Georgia Supreme Court. The appellate court will review the evidence presented to the trial court and they will decide whether any legal error was committed by the trial court.
Unfortunately, the appeal itself does not allow you to submit new evidence or new testimony outside of what was presented to the trial court.
After the appeals court reviews your case, they will decide whether grounds for an appeal exist; and if so, then whether to affirm, reverse or remand the trial court’s judgment, with the possibility of ordering a new trial.
Reasons to File an Appeal
Georgia law grants the right to appeal certain cases like child support, alimony, property division, custody and visitation, enforcement or invalidating a Prenuptial Agreement, Postnuptial Agreement or Reconciliation Agreement. Other cases are more complicated.
Chambers Family Law can help evaluate your case to determine if one of the following reasons justifies an appeal:
Justify An Appeal
Evidence or witness testimony that should have been considered but was not
Evidence or witness testimony was considered but should not have been
The law was not applied correctly
The judge did not give sufficient support for his or her findings
The trial court committed legal error in their ruling
The trial court ruled contrary to the law and/or evidence
Inadequate of unfair division of “marital” assets
Unjust child custody or visitation arrangements
Insufficient or unfair child support and/or alimony
Improper enforcement or improper invalidation of a Prenuptial Agreement, Postnuptial
Agreement, or Reconciliation Agreement
Improper determination, clarification, or allocation of separate versus marital assets
The appeal process can take up to a year or more, adding time and money to the process of finalizing your divorce. Chambers Family Law can help guide you through this process when merited and to make the appropriate and cost effective decision of whether or not to file an appeal.
It’s important to work with an attorney experienced in both divorce and appellate law when appealing a trial court’s decision.
We can advise you regarding any situation that might warrant an appeal to your divorce settlement.
Appeals Can Be Complicated
Appeals can be complicated, expensive, and time-consuming. For any chance of success, an appeal must be carefully researched to identify any errors in the previous judgement or court order.
Chambers Family Law attorneys will thoroughly review your case
An appeal must be well written and persuasively argued, and filed pursuant to certain strict time requirements and procedural drafting rules If you have received a verdict or judgment, you think is unfair, you may be entitled to an appeal.
Chambers Family Law attorneys will thoroughly review your case to determine if errors were made to warrant taking your case to appellate court.
We encourage you to reach out to discuss your situation so that we can help determine if you have a basis to file an appeal and your likelihood of success.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Appeal
Appellate work in the context of divorce refers to the process of challenging in an appellate court, a final divorce decree or order from a lower court.
This is done when one party believes there has been a significant legal error in the court's final decision or ruling regarding aspects such as alimony, child custody, property division, child support, or the enforcement or invalidation of a Prenuptial Agreement, Postnuptial Agreement, or Reconciliation Agreement etc.
A divorce ruling can be appealed after the final divorce decree or order has been issued. However, the timeline for filing an appeal, known as the "appeal period," is often limited, and the appeal must be filed within this timeframe.
It's important to consult with an attorney to understand these critical deadlines.
Appeals are typically based on claims of legal error made during the original trial. This could be an alleged misinterpretation of the law, incorrect application of the law to the facts, or a decision that is not supported by the evidence.
Disagreement with the outcome of a divorce, without a substantial legal error, typically does not constitute grounds for an appeal.
An appellate lawyer specializing in divorce appeals can help identify potential legal errors in the lower court's decision, prepare necessary documents, and present compelling arguments before the appellate court.
Their role is crucial in guiding you through the complex appellate process, interpreting intricate legal issues, and advocating for your interests.
The appellate process can potentially alter the initial rulings on child custody, alimony, and other aspects if the appellate court finds a significant legal error in the original decision.
However, it's important to note that the appellate court generally won't re-evaluate factual findings of the trial court, unless they're clearly erroneous and/or are not supported by the evidence or are contrary to law.
Consulting with an attorney can provide a clearer understanding of what to expect from the appellate process in your specific case.