Monroe County, Florida Appeals Attorneys
The right to appeal an adverse ruling is far more narrow than most Americans believe it to be. Many are unaware that appeals do not permit the raising of new grounds, for example – you are confined to the grounds discussed at your first trial. A competent legal professional can help you determine when you may appeal a ruling or decision, and when you should and should not appeal.
Appeals in Florida are governed by the state Rules of Appellate Procedure, or the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure if in federal court. The jurisdiction of each court is laid out specifically in Rule 9.030, from the Supreme Court downward – this can be very helpful if you are unsure of the path your suit needs to take through the judicial system. On top of the listed categories of jurisdiction, however, it is important to note that the Florida Supreme Court also has discretionary jurisdiction in most civil matters, meaning that it can choose what cases it wants to hear.
Many people are confused by the layers of courts, and which decisions are binding upon which other courts. The general rule is that decisions made at the same level are persuasive, but not binding, on those courts. For example, the decision of a District Court of Appeal, (DCA) will be persuasive, but it will not demand that another DCA follow that decision exactly. By comparison, all DCA decisions are binding on all lower courts, even if the DCA serves a different district.
An extremely important thing to remember is that any case affirmed without comment by a DCA (in other words, when a DCA agrees in every respect with the lower court’s ruling) is essentially finished. Since the Florida Supreme Court has discretionary jurisdiction, it can turn down the cases it has no interest in hearing, leaving the DCA as the final destination for most civil appeals. In short, appeals to the Circuit or District Courts of Appeals are as of right, while appeals to the Supreme Court of Florida are discretionary.
An Experienced Appeals Attorney Can Help
When it comes to your freedom, accept only the best. The appeals attorneys at the Silver Law Group will fight for your rights, and ensure that you get your day in court. Our Islamorada office is conveniently located and we can work around your schedule. Contact us today for a free initial consultation.