Appeals and PCRAs
When a case is important enough to appeal the decision to a higher court, every attorney desires to achieve the best possible chance for a positive outcome. A criminal appeal is not a retrial. It is the process whereby attorneys raise and respond in writing and orally to legal errors which may have occurred in the original trial or other related proceeding. Most appeals involve a set of circumstances where the trial or another lower court incorrectly denied a motion to suppress, omnibus pre-trial motion, motion to quash, a motion-in-limine, or motion to exclude evidence or where the court gave an incorrect or prejudicial jury instruction. Our firm devotes considerable time to researching, writing, and developing the record for every case to gain a clear and complete understanding of the record, prior to appeal.
Representing clients who need to appeal or defend trial court rulings, our attorneys possess unrivaled in experience in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey State and Federal Courts. Our experience writing and litigating briefs remains similarly distinguished. We have handled appeals and assisted at trial in many substantive areas of law and have garnered an unmatched reputation in appellate advocacy, both in the breadth of our arguments, and in the standard and toughness of our work.
The appeals process largely is centered upon written briefs and verbal arguments, usually before a panel of judges. Your attorney should have significant experience researching and writing appellate briefs. Briefs are extremely technical documents which incorporate the entiretrial record, and for success require an attorney who pays attention to all the small details.
Our experience in both the state and federal appellate courts gives us a range and depth of knowledge enabling us to excel at all levels of the appellate process, including post-conviction relief act petitions (“PCRA”), writs of mandamus, habeas corpus petitions, filing amicus (friend-of-the-court) briefs, and most importantly, securing favorable appellate rulings for our clients. Our attorneys have successfully handled appeals in criminal defense, civil rights, police brutality, interlocutory appeals, clemency petitions, pardons, post-sentence motions, motions for reconsideration, bail appeals.
We have extensive first-chair trial experience. Having tried cases to judges and juries, in both state and federal courts, we understand the importance of having a comprehensive case plan, creating and preserving a strong record. Additionally, we are uniquely positioned to help clients during trial by working collaboratively with trial lawyers to frame legal theories, draft motions, preserve the record, and provide representation in interlocutory proceedings.