Being convicted of a Federal crime is a troubling and life-altering experience. With the rising rate of wrongful convictions, it is important to understand a conviction is not the end of the road and you may still appeal your sentence. This article will outline the process for appealing a Federal conviction. The federal appellate law is a highly complex area of law and you often only get one shot at litigating the issues in your case; you will need the assistance of an experienced Federal Criminal Appeals Attorney. Our attorneys are licensed to practice before many of our Federal Circuit Courts of Appeals and have handled hundreds of appeals.
Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure 4(b)(1)(A) governs this time period. Generally, after you have been convicted you have 14 days from the date of the conviction to file a notice of an appeal with the Circuit Court of Appeals in your jurisdiction. Traditionally, if you did not execute an appellate waiver with a plea agreement, your attorney should file a claim of appeal to preserve your appeal.
It is important to remember an appeal is not a retrial of your case. Usually, grounds for setting aside a conviction are:
The verdict rendered by the jury could have been inconsistent with the evidence presented. So much so, that a reasonable juror would not have convicted you of the crime(s) alleged.
The judge may have applied the wrong law to your case or applied it incorrectly as presented to the jury.
This means there was a mistake in both/either facts or law as applied to your case which resulted in an incorrect verdict. This could also encompass issues with jurors such as bias.
This means that your attorney was somehow deficient during the defense of your case. While this is very difficult to prove, in cases involving highly complex areas of law such as Health Care Fraud, it is possible to meet this burden and overturn a conviction.
Federal Circuit Court of Appeals are governed by region:
What happens after the Court of Appeals has overturned your conviction is a very circumstance-specific issue. Often, your case is remanded back to the trial level for further proceedings which could include a new sentencing proceeding, a retrial of your case, or factual findings regarding a specific issue.
Regardless of the reason for your conviction, it is important to consult with experienced appellate attorneys to handle your case. Our attorneys are licensed to practice in the many Federal Circuit Courts of Appeal. Being convicted of a crime is a terrifying experience and you don’t want inexperienced legal counsel handling your appeal. Our appellate attorneys have extensive experience in fighting white-collar Federal convictions including health care fraud, wire fraud, mail fraud, and drug trafficking (DEA registrants).
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