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How do I appeal a Florida family law case?

by | Apr 26, 2019 | Family Law Appeals, Firm News |

One of the final steps in the divorce process is for a judge to enter a final judgment in your case. Once they do so, it will be necessary to file a motion to modify your court order. If you both signed a settlement agreement, then it may only possible to file an appeal if there are concerns over how it was reached or its enforceability.

Appeals can be filed only if there was a significant error that happened while your case was being tried. If the presiding judge engaged in an abuse of discretion or there was an error of law or fact, then you may be eligible to file an appeal as well.

The appellate process is understood to have begun once you serve notice to the other side that you’re appealing the case. The jurisdiction has set court rules that you must follow in serving notice. If you fail to honor established deadlines and procedures, then you may lose your right to appeal it.

After filing a notice, you’ll be required to file a Record of Appeal. This includes the clerk’s records and the trial transcript prepared by the court reporter.

Each party will then be asked to prepare an appellate brief. It must include a legal argument and relevant references to case law. The Record of Appeal documents must be included alongside this brief.

It’s at the appellate court’s discretion as to whether to grant the parties an opportunity to present their oral arguments in front of them. If they’re given permission to do so, then they’ll have up to 30 minutes to do so. No witnesses can be brought in for this presentation.

Once oral arguments are made, the appellate court is allowed to take up to 60 days to render a decision. They often air on the side of the lower court. If they don’t, then they often demand that they hold a new trial or modify their decision.

Appealing a Florida family law case can be quite costly with very little success. Individuals in Orlando who file a motion to modify often have much better success in seeking changes to alimony, child support or custody and property division awards. A family law appeals attorney can advise you of your prospect for success in appealing your case and advise you whether filing a modification request may be in your best interest instead.