33. Appellate Law

Appellate Law“Apellate Law” means “related to appeals”. Appeal 1) v. to ask a higher court to reverse the decision of a trial court after final judgment or other legal ruling. After the lower court judgment is entered into the record, the losing party (Appellant) must file a notice of appeal, request transcripts or other records of the trial court (or agree with the other party on an “agreed-upon statement”), file briefs with the appeals court citing legal reasons for over-turning the ruling, and show how those reasons (usually other appeal decisions called “precedents”) relate to the facts in the case. No new evidence is admitted on appeal, for it is strictly a legal argument.

The other party (Respondent or Appellee) usually files a responsive brief countering these arguments. The appellant then can counter that response with a final brief. If desired by either party, they will then argue the case before the appeals court. The options the court has at the conclusion of an apeal are: to sustain (up hold, or “let stand”) the original ruling, reverse it (effectively deciding the opposite way as the original court), send it back to the trial court, or reverse in part and confirm in part. There are Federal Courts of Appeal in ten different “circuits,” and above them is the Supreme Court which selectively hears only a few appeals at the highest level. 2) n. the name for the process of appealing, as in “he has filed an appeal.”