Civil appeals encompass a wide variety of cases. Essentially, any direct appeal other than in a criminal case falls under the civil appeal umbrella. In fact, post-conviction petitions and writs of habeas corpus are civil proceedings. Litigants that are unsuccessful in trials involving family law, negligence, medical malpractice, business litigation, contract disputes, and any other civil case may appeal if they lose at trial.
The civil appeals process is similar to a criminal appeal. However, post-trial motions are not a mandatory prerequisite before filing a civil appeal. After filing a notice of appeal, the civil appeal process is nearly identical to a criminal appeal. A docketing statement follows the filing of a notice of appeal, at which time, the record on appeal needs to be ordered and filed with the appellate court.
Once the record is prepared, the appeals attorney must analyze the record for prejudicial errors. Then the appeals lawyer must research and write an appellate brief that complies with the myriad rules of appellate procedure. If we need to defend an appeal on your behalf, we will scrutinize the appellant’s briefs and we will formulate a written response on your behalf. As allowed by the appellate rules of procedure, we will also file a reply brief for you.
Being awarded a monetary judgment after trial does not mean that you will be paid anytime soon. Likewise, if you owe money to someone following a trial you can stay the monetary judgment while appealing the trial court. Illinois law requires a trial court to stay a monetary judgment if the court accepts an appeal bond. The appeal bond does not necessarily have to be cash but it can be a variety of different things such as securities, certificates of deposit, or anything else that has a value equal to the judgment plus interest and costs. In certain situations, a trial court can order an appeal bond that is less than the judgment amount.
Non-monetary judgments are treated differently. Generally, non-monetary judgments are not stayed unless it is just to stay the judgment. Whether a non-monetary award is entirely within the discretion of the judge and an appellate court will not reverse the judgment unless an abuse of discretion occurred – a very high burden to overcome. If a judge does grant an appeal bond in a non-monetary judgment, the judge is free to impose any reasonable conditions on the appeal bond.
Whether you are seeking to appeal a decision or whether you are seeking to defend an appeal, we can help. Contact us today to discuss what we can do to get the appellate outcome you need. We have the experience to handle appeals involving all aspects of civil litigation. We also handle immigration appeals. We do not administrative appeals such as denial of social security or unemployment benefits.
Contact us directly to see how we can help 630-360-2LAW (2529)