Home Criminal Procedure The Defendant’s Right to Appeal

The Defendant’s Right to Appeal

The Defendant's Right to Appeal

When a convict disputes the sentence or guilty verdict, he or she may request an appeal. Appellate courts deal with cases after the fact to screen criminal cases for errors of procedure. Facts are not typically examined in an appellate court. Instead, the ways by which evidence was used or acquired is placed under examination according to Constitutional or statutory principles governing the criminal court procedure. The appeal process is multifaceted. It can either be complex or quite simple.

Convicted criminalscourtsIn the case that the original decision is upheld, the convict has a right to file appeal in a higher court. Appellate courts are arranged in state intermediate courts of appeal and state supreme court. Federal appellate courts are arranged in federal intermediate courts of appeal and ultimately, the Supreme Court. 

The Supreme Court is the highest court in the land and essentially, it is a glorified appellate court. The greatest Constitutional questions are reserved for the Supreme Court. Appellate courts deal with both criminal and civil cases. Each time a case is asked to be brought before a higher court, the criteria to be granted the privilege of being heard is tougher. 

The Supreme Court has its own writ; it’s called the Writ of Certiorari. Writs of Certiorari grant the privilege of being heard before the Supreme Court. Thousands of cases request Writs of Certiorari and few are granted. The Court gravitates towards cases that have implications for every citizen. Primarily, the cases that the Supreme Court picks concern an important Constitutional issue.