How to appeal a judgment without an attorney

Filing an appeal is a moderately simple task, even without an attorney. You can appeal any case, unless you did not appear for court and received a default judgment. Preparing an appeal does not legally allow for assistance from legal aid or any other court office.


Check your Notice of Entry of Judgment for the “stay of entry” date. Be sure it has not expired. Be careful to note that if the deadline falls on a holiday or weekend, then the due date is postponed until the next business day. If you are mailing forms, add three days to ensure they get there on time. If your papers are postmarked by the required date, they are accepted.


Create a brief in formal letter format, with double-spaced type within one-inch margins on all sides; each page should be numbered. Courts would prefer one with a Table of Contents for the required Demand for Removal, Affidavit of Good Faith and Affidavit of Service, but will accept a brief without one. Type the papers if possible.

Brief Cover

The brief cover must be white if you are the petitioner or appellant. It must be blue if you are a respondent. Any cover should be made of paper, but paper thicker than that used in the brief.


All of your documents must be presented with an original and three copies.


Pay the filing fee. Each petition has a separate cost, so contact your Court of Appeals for specific costs for your appeal. If you cannot afford the filing fee, you can ask for a waiver.


The Demand for Removal must be served to all individuals and attorneys on the case. You must serve these copies by mail and submit the Proof of Service to the County Clerk’s office.

Originally Posted by amyalderman

You would have to file the appropriate papers according to your State – possibly a Motion to reduce for changed circumstances, possibly a Motion because the order was based on incorrect info.

You can do it without an Attorney, of course, but if the other side HAS an Attorney you will be at a terrible disadvantage.

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Couple things. An appeal is based on legal error – not because it wasn’t fair or you didn’t like it. Therefore, you’re going to have to cite exactly how the judge legally erred. You’re going to have to supply actual court precedents where a previous court decided FOR the argument you plan to present.

If you don’t know how to write and argue an appeal, and you don’t know, from a legal perspective, what the judge did wrong, and you don’t know know how to do legal research, you’ll be more successful doing open heart surgery on yourself.

Yes, what error happened, did they base the child support off the wrong income. In most cases, child support is based on a forumla that is based on income figures given the court. They may then add health insurance payments, child day care and more.

But normally in family court, without an attorney you don’t get too far

Originally Posted by david88

Appeal what? A witness is going to appeal a marriage license OR the validity of a marriage?

A witness is simply a person who was there and saw two people take vows. They don’t swear to any facts.

Or isn’t that your question?

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Add your answer here.

Check out some similar questions!

I would like to know if there is a form for filing a Stay on Appeal that can be used while being in pro per?

I need to know how to file an appeal against an eviction. The building we live in was sold. We were served an eviction notice (basically the new owners are evicting all tenants) we rented a house and the new landlord frauded us and kept our money. We just need a few days to get more money.

I have many credit cards (big mistake!) & they are all up to date except 1. It is a Discover Card. The thing is, I had a baby a year ago & I lost my job when I was pregnant with her. I have since gotten married & I do not work, except for taking care of my little girl because it would be much more.

How to appeal a judgment without an attorney

I recently came across this article “How to Appeal a Judgment without an Attorney.” Being fairly intrigued, I read the article looking for holes that I could use in writing this post. However, I must admit, it was well written and it was thorough. It began by pointing out that court decisions can be challenged through an appeal.

An appeal asks a higher court to review the lower court’s decision to determine if the judge applied the law correctly. People often refer to an appeal as one of a “technical” nature because it focuses on the law that was applied in the original trial or the evidence that was allowed (also part of the law). The article pointed out that appeals are complex and non-attorneys are given no leeway as to the procedures, form and deadlines which much be followed. But if this process can be done without paying for an attorney, why not save the money and do it yourself? Here’s what the article only mentions in passing:

Understand the requirements for an appeal

The appeals process is complicated. The deadlines are specific and the rules are not flexible. This applies to the most difficult things (the arguments) but extends down to the minute details. Even the margins and font of the brief are prescribed by the Court.

The appellant must file timely notice that s/he intends to appeal. The onus is then on the appellant to organize, and sometimes order, the transcripts. If evidence must be added to the record, which only happens in unique circumstances, it is the responsibility of the the appellant to take steps to make sure that happens. The appellant must also take steps to cause the record to be assembled and sent up to the Appeal’s Court.

Once at the Court, the appellant moves the case forward by filing his/her brief. The brief must be carefully drafted based only on the evidence and law allowed in the trial (“the record”). It is due quickly. The appendix, which submits the documents/exhibits that the appellant wants to reference, must be compiled. The argument must be tailored and concise.

The Appeals Court will not consider the decision that was made on the merits of the case. What does that mean? That means that the Court will not revisit the ultimate finding (guilty or not guilty) to determine whether the judge or jury made the correct decision. For example, if you were charged with criminal assault and battery, the Court will not allow any discussion of guilt or innocence. An appeal only reviews how the judge applied the rule or law and if that was correct.

Training is Key

Appellate law is more than just being a litigator. It’s being an excellent manager of time, a skilled writer and a lawyer versed in evidence. If any of these skills are lacking, your appeal can be denied rather than push forward.

Appeals law is unique. This is because appeals are submitted by brief and then it is up to the Court whether oral argument is assigned. A litigant may never appear before a single Justice or panel of judges. It is critical that the brief be written in good form, on point, targeted to the issues and be submitted on time. If any of those elements are missing, you may never have the opportunity to argue before the Court. This is why you really should have someone who has training, and experience, in this area of law.

Contact Us

If you wish to appeal a judgment on a case, do not delay. Time is important and the sooner I have the issues and the transcript from the original court case, the better prepared I can be to help you. You can reach out to me here online or call us by visiting my contact page. I have two offices to help you.

Landlords can typically handle the eviction of a tenant without an attorney.

The Magisterial District Court Rules of Procedure are designed so that a layperson can file a Landlord and Tenant Complaint, obtain a judgment, and enforce the Judgment for Possession without legal expertise. However, when a tenant files an appeal to the Court of Common Pleas, it is time to hire an attorney.

The process of filing an appeal is not onerous for a tenant. The appeal by a residential tenant must occur within 10 days (30 days for nonresidential) from the date of the judgment for possession. The tenant simply fills out a notice of appeal form and files it at the prothonotary’s office in the county that the subject property is located. A filing fee must be paid at the time of its filing, although there is an exception for the indigent. The tenant then has 10 days to serve the appeal on the landlord and the Magisterial District Court, which can be done personally or by certified mail. The tenant must file a proof of service with the prothonotary within 10 days after filing the appeal.

Once an appeal is filed, the proceedings in Common Please Courts are de novo, which means that the result of the hearing in the Magisterial District Court is of no consequence. This places the burden on the landlord to move the case forward by filing a complaint which meets the requirements of the Rules of Civil Procedure. The notice of appeal form notifies the landlord that he has 20 days from the date of service of the appeal to file a complaint, and that the failure to do so could result in judgment against the landlord.

After the landlord files a complaint, the tenant must file a responsive pleading, usually in the form of an answer. The answer may contain “new matter” which requires a written response by the landlord. After this stage, the matter can then proceed to the discovery phase and then eventually trial—although many counties will require the matter to go through compulsory arbitration. If compulsory arbitration is required, the non-prevailing party could file an appeal of the arbitrator’s award and list the case for a trial. The entire process from appeal to trial can be time consuming and costly. It often can take six months to have the merits of the case heard by an arbitration panel or judge.

The Rules of Civil Procedure provide a guard against a tenant from filing an appeal merely as a delay tactic to being evicted. Specifically, in order for the appeal to act as a supersedeas (stop the landlord from enforcing the judgment for possession), a tenant is required to deposit with the prothonotary an amount equal to three month’s rent or the actual amount of rent in arrears, whichever amount is less. Furthermore, in order to keep the supersedeas in place during the pendency of the appeal, the tenant must pay into court the monthly rent every 30 days.

Tenants without the financial ability to pay the amounts necessary to obtain a supersedeas may make use of the indigency exceptions found in the rules. The tenant only needs to sign an affidavit indicating that he cannot afford to pay three month’s rent or the actual rent in arrears. In such a case, the tenant is only required to make a payment of one-third of the monthly rent into court at the time of filing the appeal in order to immediately obtain a supersedeas. The tenant must then pay the remaining two-thirds of rent into court within 20 days and then continue to pay the monthly rent every 30 days into court in order to keep the supersedeas in place.

If the appealing tenant fails to obtain a supersedeas, the landlord may proceed before the Magisterial District Court in enforcing the Judgment of Possession, even though the appeal is pending. Where the supersedeas was initially obtained by the tenant, but the tenant subsequently fails to make a required monthly rent payment into court, the landlord can file to terminate the supersedeas and return to the Magisterial District Court to enforce the Judgment for Possession.

If the tenant continues to make the monthly payment into court, the supersedeas stays in place and the landlord will not be able to evict the tenant until the outcome of the appeal. However, the landlord may file a motion to have the payments made into court released to him while the appeal is pending.

The Rules of Civil Procedure for pleadings, discovery and motion practice are simply too complex for a layperson. An attorney is needed to properly file pleadings, motions and serve or respond to discovery requests in accordance with these rules. Indeed, an attorney may save the landlord significant money by getting the appeal dismissed in its early stages if the tenant fails to properly perfect the appeal or by getting a supersedeas lifted when the tenant fails to make the required payment into court.

Summary: Have you had a default judgment filed against you? You still might be able to appeal. Use SoloSuit to respond in 15 minutes and win your lawsuit.

So, you didn’t file your Answer on time. Or the Court rejected your Answer. The Plaintiff requested a Default Judgement against you. And the Court ruled in their favor. Now you’re wondering if you can appeal a Default Judgment or if all hope is lost. Before you decide to throw in the towel, you may be able to appeal a Default Judgement by taking the steps below.

What is a Default Judgement?

Default Judgement often occurs when a defendant, or the person being sued, does not respond by the deadline in the Summons. Most courts require that you file an Answer to the Complaint or Petition, depending on what state you are in, within 30 days after you are served. When you don’t, the plaintiff can request that the Court enters Default Judgment. Receiving a Default Judgment means you lose, and the creditor or Plaintiff wins by default because you didn’t show up or respond.

Before you give up hope, you can still appeal the Default Judgement by filing a Motion to Set Aside Judgment and an Order. A Motion to Set Aside Judgment may allow you to be heard and to set the lawsuit back in motion.

File Your Motion to Set Aside Judgement

Filing a Motion to Set Aside Judgement lets the Court know why you didn’t file an Answer, why you didn’t file your Answer on time, or why you didn’t appear at the hearing. The Court won’t accept just any excuse. Here are some commonly acceptable reasons to set aside a judgment that courts generally accept. You should include any of these claims that apply to you:

  • Due to a mistake, surprise, excusable neglect, or inadvertence
  • Judgment has been satisfied, released, or discharged
  • The statute of limitations for the lawsuit passed
  • The Petition or Complaint contained mistakes or was filed incorrectly
  • You were improperly served

In your Motion, it is important to explain why the Court should set aside their previous ruling. You do not need to explain too much, so keep it short and to the point. You want to include whether or not you would like to request a hearing. In some courts, the hearing will be mandatory. Check with the Clerk of Court before filing, so you aren’t surprised to find out that a hearing is scheduled after you file your Motion.

When you file your Motion to Set Aside Judgement, you also file the Order to go along with it. Here is how it works. When you file a Motion, you are asking the Judge to make a decision or a ruling based on the statements made in your Motion. The Order expresses the Court’s decision on your Motion. You need to provide the Court with both documents. Your Order should include a signature and date block for the Judge to sign and date when the Motion is accepted.

Win your debt lawsuit by responding

Here’s a Quick Recap of the Steps:

Step 1. Draft your Motion to Set Aside Judgement and the Order.

Step 2. Call the Clerk of Court to find out how much it costs to file a Motion in your Court. When you speak with the Clerk, this may also be your opportunity to determine if you may qualify for a fee waiver. Remember to find out the Court’s accepted forms of payment.

Step 3. Find out if your Court accepts e-filing. Or confirm the mailing address and mail the documents along with payment to the Court.

Step 4. Mail a copy of these documents to the Plaintiff the same day you provide them to the Court.

Next Steps: Once Your Motion to Set Aside and Order are Granted

  1. You may have a chance to file your Answer again. Filing your Answer does not have to be a complicated process. In essence, you are responding to the allegations or assertions in the Complaint or Petition. Here at SoloSuit, we can help you generate your Answer in 15 minutes, and if you’d like, you can even get your Answer professionally reviewed by one of our partnering attorneys. If you intend to win your case, this may be an excellent and affordable option for you and help you avoid some of the common mistakes people make when drafting their Answers.
    1. You may have an opportunity to schedule a hearing. If a hearing is mandatory or if you have a chance to request a hearing, this may be an excellent opportunity to let the Court know how some of the reasons listed above apply to you and why they hindered your ability to file your Answer on time. You must appear on the scheduled date or notify the Clerk of Court that you may need to reschedule. The last thing you want to do is miss the hearing again.

    Receiving Default Judgement can leave you feeling powerless and hopeless if you don’t know how to fight back. We hope these tips and strategies help you get your voice heard and provide you with an opportunity to win your case.

    What is SoloSuit?

    SoloSuit makes it easy to respond to a debt collection lawsuit.

    How it works: SoloSuit is a step-by-step web-app that asks you all the necessary questions to complete your answer. Upon completion, you can either print the completed forms and mail in the hard copies to the courts or you can pay SoloSuit to file it for you and to have an attorney review the document.

    Respond with SoloSuit

    “First time getting sued by a debt collector and I was searching all over YouTube and ran across SoloSuit, so I decided to buy their services with their attorney reviewed documentation which cost extra but it was well worth it! SoloSuit sent the documentation to the parties and to the court which saved me time from having to go to court and in a few weeks the case got dismissed!” – James

    How to Answer a Summons for Debt Collection Guides for Other States

    Here’s a list of guides for other states.

    • Alaska
    • Georgia
    • Montana
    • New Mexico
    • North Dakota
    • South Dakota ; File a Motion to Satisfy Judgment
    • Vermont
    • Wyoming

    Guides on How to Beat Every Debt Collector

    Being sued by a different debt collector? We’re making guides on how to beat each one.

    Other helpful articles

    Need more info on statutes of limitations? Read our 50-state guide.

    Need help managing your finances? Check out these resources.

    It only takes 15 minutes.
    And 50% of our customers’ cases have been dismissed in the past.

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    How to appeal a judgment without an attorney

    Information, Deadlines and Time Frames for Appealing

    There are exceptions for different matters, and types of review requested.
    Some of the deadlines are often extended. Some are almost never extended.
    Every state, and even courts within each state may have different rules. The outline here is a general checklist for the State of Missouri, (Supreme Court) and the Appellate Court in the Southern District at the time this page was prepared.

    There are many misunderstandings because the client feels like he should be doing something during the long period that the appeal is pending.

    Writing the Appellant’s Brief is the most difficult, demanding and time-consuming job in the whole process, and only your lawyer can research and write it. You will have no way to know what he or she is doing, and you will feel very frustrated.

    _______ date of your judgment
    _______ date after trial motions were ruled on
    _______ + thirty days (your judgment is final)
    _______ + ten days= date Notice of Appeal MUST be filed
    _______ + ten days = date transcript and legal file must be ordered
    _______ + ten days from date Court Reporter gives estimate, deposit must be paid


    _______ sixty days from date the transcript and legal file are completed, filed and served on opposing parties, the Appellant must prepare and file ten copies of Appellant’s Brief with the Court, and two copies on each of the attorneys for the other sides.
    _______ within thirty days from date Appellant’s Brief is received, Respondent may file a Respondent’s Brief
    _______ within fifteen days from the date Respondent’s Brief is received, the Appellant may file a Reply to the Respondent’s Brief
    _______ two or three months after all of the briefs have been filed, the Court MAY schedule oral argument (it must be requested).

    Number of days of trial?

    What did you lose?

    What will you gain by appealing?

    What are the LEGAL mistakes that the judge or jury made?

    Even if you win the appeal, can you collect anything? Is it possible that the other side will file bankruptcy?

    Thank you for visiting my web site. This page was last updated on 02/6/2009.

    If, after reviewing these pages, you choose to contact me, please keep your message brief . You must IDENTIFY YOURSELF. Include your City, State and Country in your email and include information in the subject line identifying the nature of your request. I do not respond to ANY messages which do not follow these guidelines, or are sent anonymously. I do not open messages which contain attachments.


    All pages on this web site are for general informational purposes only. Legal concepts are based upon Missouri law, and general practice in local state and federal courts. Before applying any general legal concepts to specific facts, an attorney would have to be fully informed of the specific circumstances and goals of the individuals involved, which would include examination of relevant documents and conferring with the parties.

    How to Stop Collection of a Judgment While You Appeal: Obtaining a Stay Pending Appeal

    The filing of an appeal from a civil judgment awarding money does not automatically stop or “stay” enforcement of the judgment. In short, this means that the party that was awarded a money judgment can generally take action to collect on the judgment while the appeal is pending. While this may be understood by a New Jersey appeals lawyer, it is not commonly understood by civil litigants who assume that the mere filing of an appeal stops trial court proceedings. The reality is that a party can pursue an appeal from a money judgment without a stay, but in order to stop the enforcement of a judgment, or trial court proceedings in general, while an appeal is pending, the appealing party must take action and obtain a stay pending appeal from the court.

    Rationale for a Stay Pending Appeal

    One who wishes to appeal from a money judgment and stay enforcement of that judgment must, with certain exceptions, request a stay from the trial court that entered the judgment. The purpose of the stay is to protect the appealing party, the judgment debtor, who might ultimately obtain a reversal of the judgment. If the appellate court were to grant a reversal of the judgment, the judgment debtor would be harmed if the prevailing party, the judgment creditor, had been permitted to execute on the judgment before the appellate court had an opportunity to review the case.

    The Requirement of Security or a Supersedeas Bond

    In most cases, in order to obtain and maintain a stay pending appeal from the trial court judge, the party appealing from a money judgment must post a supersedeas bond or other security. R. 2:9-5. The purpose of the bond is to protect the prevailing party from the loss of the use of funds otherwise immediately due under the order or judgment being appealed. See Courvoisier v. Harley Davidson of Trenton, Inc., 162 N.J. 153, 158 (1999). Accordingly, the bond required is normally in the amount of the judgment plus the amount of interest that would accrue on the judgment while the appeal is pending.

    Consulting With an Appeals Lawyer to Decide if You Need to Obtain a Stay

    Nonetheless, there are situations in which the appealing party may decide that obtaining a stay is not necessary. Posting a supersedeas bond or providing other security necessary to obtain a stay has costs and conceivably makes it easier for the prevailing party to collect on the judgment if it is affirmed on appeal. If the appealing party believes a stay is not needed to prevent enforcement of the judgment, then it is better to avoid the attorney’s fees and costs, not to mention the challenge of posting a bond or other security, that are necessary in order to obtain a stay. For example, parties can agree that the judgment will not be enforced pending appeal. Alternatively, if the party pursuing the appeal has good reason to believe the prevailing party at the trial level lacks the resources or desire to collect on the judgment while the appeal is pending, the appealing party may decide to take a calculated risk and proceed with the appeal without obtaining a stay.

    Ultimately, deciding whether or not to pursue a stay pending appeal is a fact specific determination that is best made with the advice of a competent New Jersey appeals lawyer who understands the client’s unique situation. Pursuing an appeal of a civil judgment in the appellate courts of New Jersey is a significant decision. Thorough consultation between a client and their New Jersey appeals lawyer is necessary to determine whether incurring the expense involved in obtaining a stay in connection with prosecution of an appeal is worthwhile.

    California Code of Civil Procedure (CCP) Section 916 stays enforcement of certain judgments during the pendency of an appeal. This means that, in qualifying cases, filing an appeal will prevent a prevailing party from enforcing the judgment obtained in the trial court until the appeal is finished. (And if the judgment is reversed on appeal, it can’t be collected at all.)

    However, even though the language of CCP Section 916 does not stay enforcement of all judgments during the pendency of appeals. The statute begins with the carveout: “Except as provided in Sections 917.1 to 917.9” – which means that the stay of enforcement created by Section 916 does not apply in the situations described in those other statutes.

    Parties seeking to stay enforcement of a judgment during an appeal should consult their attorneys to find out whether a stay of enforcement is available in their specific situations.

    For example: Collections of money judgments and awards of costs are not automatically stayed upon the filing of an appeal. However, a party against whom a money judgment was rendered may be able to obtain a stay of the money judgment (and/or an award of costs) pending appeal by posting a bond or collateral with the court. (CCP Section 917.1) In some cases, the court may also exercise discretionary authority to stay the judgment without the posting of a bond or collateral – but such discretionary stays are within the judgment of the court, and typically require the party seeking the stay to demonstrate that some significant harm or injustice would occur if the stay is not granted.

    There are many reasons why a party might wish to stay enforcement of a judgment (some more legal, and more ethical, than others) but in proper circumstances, parties may be able to temporarily stop enforcement of a judgment–including some money judgments–while an appeal is pending.

    Disclaimer: THIS ARTICLE IS FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY, AND DOES NOT CONSTITUTE LEGAL ADVICE OR CREATE AN ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE AUTHOR OR ROSS LAW AND ANY PERSON. Your rights and experiences may vary. Never use an online article (including this one) to evaluate your legal claims. Speak with an experienced lawyer promptly to obtain a personalized evaluation of your claims, possible damages, and the various legal options available to you. You may lose or compromise your rights if you delay in consulting legal counsel. Most legal claims (and defenses), as well as legal and court procedures, are complicated and fact-dependent. If you believe you have a claim against someone who injured you, a lawyer who represented you in a previous lawsuit, or any other type of legal claim, consult an experienced lawyer immediately for an evaluation of your personal rights and claims.

    The broadest statutory right to an appeal arises after the trial court issues its final judgment in a case. Availability of an appeal from a final judgment does not require the permission of the trial court, and does not require the permission of the appeals court unless the case falls into one of the discretionary appeal categories listed in OCGA § 5-6-35(a). An order is a final judgment “where it leaves no issues remaining to be resolved, constitutes the court’s final ruling on the merits of the action, and leaves the parties with no further recourse in the trial court.” Bd. of Regents v. Canas, 295 Ga. App. 505, 506 (672 SE2d 471) (2009) (citation and quotation marks omitted).

    Specifically, OCGA § 5-6-34(a)(1) provides for appeal from “[a]ll final judgments, that is to say, where the case is no longer pending in the court below, except as provided in Code Section 5-6-35.” Section 5-6-35, the discretionary appeal statute, requires the appellant to apply for discretionary review in certain classes of cases prior to taking an appeal.

    Prior to entry of final judgment in the trial court, a party may have other options for appeal. The party can attempt the interlocutory appeal procedure of OCGA § 5-6-34(b). If the case falls into one of the 11 categories listed in OCGA § 5-6-34(a)(2)-(12), the party can file a direct appeal without using the interlocutory appeal procedure, even though the judgment may not be final. Some “collateral orders” are immediately appealable, and in extraordinary cases, a party can seek a writ of mandamus.

    The finality of a judgment is determined in part by OCGA § 9-11-54(b). See, e.g., Rhymes v. East Atlanta Church of God, Inc., 284 Ga. 145 (663 SE2d 670) (2008) (interpreting OCGA § 9-11-54(b) and OCGA § 5-6-34(a)(1) together). Section 9-11-54(b) provides in full: “When more than one claim for relief is presented in an action, whether as a claim, counterclaim, cross-claim, or third-party claim, or when multiple parties are involved, the court may direct the entry of a final judgment as to one or more but fewer than all of the claims or parties only upon an express determination that there is no just reason for delay and upon an express direction for the entry of judgment. In the absence of such determination and direction, any order or other form of decision, however designated, which adjudicates fewer than all the claims or the rights and liabilities of fewer than all the parties shall not terminate the action as to any of the claims or parties, and the order or other form of decision is subject to revision at any time before the entry of judgment adjudicating all the claims and the rights and liabilities of all the parties.” (Emphasis added.) This means that an order is not a final judgment as to any claim or party, unless all claims have been resolved as to all parties, or the trial court makes the express determination provided by this section.

    Trial court’s designation not controlling

    The use (or non-use) by the trial court of the word “final” in an order does not conclusively determine whether the order is a “final judgment.” “Whether an order is final and appealable is judged by its function and substance, rather than any ‘magic language.’” Hughey v. Gwinnett Cnty., 278 Ga. 740, 741 (609 SE2d 324) (2004) (citation omitted). Further, “the titling of an order as final does not equate to an express determination that there was no just reason for delay and an express direction for the entry of final judgment under OCGA § 9–11–54(b).” Sotter v. Stephens, 291 Ga. 79, 83 (727 SE2d 484) (2012) (citing Rhymes, 284 Ga. 145). See also State v. Clark, 273 Ga. App. 411, 414 (615 SE2d 143) (2005) (noting order may constitute final judgment “even though [it] does not specify that it is a grant of final judgment”) (citation and quotation marks omitted).

    Although this rule may be better than any alternative, it is not entirely satisfactory. Parties generally must decide within 30 days or less of a final judgment whether to file a notice of appeal, see OCGA § 5-6-38(a), but cannot know from the trial court’s description of any given order whether it constitutes a final judgment. Further, to the extent that a trial court’s incorrect designation of an order as “final” could be considered reversible error, it apparently is not a type of error that must be preserved, as appeals courts have allowed parties to appeal orders designated as “final” beyond the 30 day period without having objected at the time. E.g., Sotter, 291 Ga. at 84.

    Reservation of calculation of damages precludes finality

    An order is not a final judgment if it leaves unresolved the calculation of damages. See Sotter, 291 Ga. 79.

    Synonymous with “final disposition of the action”

    The Georgia provision for attorney’s fees for frivolous litigation, OCGA § 9-15-14, requires a party seeking such attorney’s fees to request them “not later than 45 days after the final disposition of the action.” In Fairburn Banking Co. v. Gafford, 263 Ga. 792 (439 SE2d 482) (1994), the Georgia Supreme Court held that “final disposition of the action” under this statute has the same meaning as “final judgment” in OCGA § 5-6-34(a)(1).

    Later amendments indicate non-final

    The Georgia Supreme Court has noted that later amendments by the trial court to an order tend to indicate the pre-amendment order was not final. See Hoover v. Hoover, No. S14F0236 (Ga. Apr. 22, 2014).

    Claims stayed pending bankruptcy preclude finality

    An order is not a final judgment if there are still outstanding claims against any party, even if the claims have been stayed as a result of the party’s bankruptcy. See Distelhurst v. Winn, No. A14A1979 (Ga. App. Aug. 8, 2014).

    Order enforcing settlement not final

    In Underwood v. Underwood, 282 Ga. 643, 644 (651 SE2d 736) (2007), the Georgia Supreme Court held that “notwithstanding the trial court’s grant of a motion to enforce a settlement, a case is not at an end until such time as the agreement has been made the judgment of the court, thereby terminating the litigation.” (Citation and quotation marks omitted.)

    How to appeal a judgment without an attorneyBeing convicted of a crime can have far reaching effects in a person’s life. It can impact your career as well as future career choices. It can also impact where you live and the ability to hold or obtain certain licenses. In some instances it can even affect your ability to maintain custody of your children. As a result, being convicted of a crime can lead a person to believe that everything they hoped for in the future – a good life, good job and family – is over. This feeling of hopelessness can be magnified when the conviction came as the result of a bad trial or you being pressured into entering a guilty plea, all while knowing your innocence. However, this doesn’t have to be the case.

    There are mechanisms that can address the issues resulting in a wrongful conviction to help “right the wrong” that occurred. One such mechanism in New York State is what is commonly referred to as a 440 Motion. The more technical name is a Motion to Vacate Judgement, under New York Criminal Procedure Law Rule 440.10, hence the nickname 440 Motion.

    A 440 Motion can reverse a criminal conviction by vacating the judgment. It is important to understand that a 440 Motion is not an appeal. Without getting into too much of the details of an appeal, an appeal is a mechanism used to address technical mistakes or errors that occurred in the trial. Thus, the appeals court will only review the details of the trial record and will not entertain new information or evidence. However, with a 440 Motion the court will entertain new information not contained in the trial, provided the motion is based upon very specific circumstances.

    To be clear, the 440 Motion is not a tool to vacate all convictions. Rather, it is used to remedy very specific injustices that call into question the integrity of a conviction. For example, it is used to vacate a judgment when:

    • The court did not have jurisdiction over either the subject matter or the accused; or
    • The judgment was obtained through duress, misrepresentation or fraud on the part of the court, prosecutor or a person acting on behalf of either the court or prosecutor; or
    • Material evidence used at trial resulting in the judgment was known to be false by either the prosecutor or court, prior to the entry of judgment; or
    • Material evidence used at trial by the prosecutor was obtained in violation of the defendant’s rights under the constitution of the State of New York or of the United States; or
    • During the proceeding resulting in the judgment, the defendant was unable to understand or participate by reason of mental illness; or
    • Improper and prejudicial conduct not appearing in the trial record occurred during a trial resulting in the judgment which conduct, if it had appeared in the record, would have required a reversal of the judgment upon an appeal; or
    • New evidence was discovered after the entry of a judgment based upon a verdict of guilty after trial, which could not have been produced by the defendant at the trial even with due diligence and which is of such character as to create a probability that had such evidence been in trial, the verdict would have been more favorable to the defendant, provided that a motion based on such ground must be made with due diligence after the discovery of such alleged new evidence; or
    • Forensic DNA testing of evidence after the entry of judgment, (1) in the case of someone convicted after a guilty plea, shows a substantial probability that the defendant was innocent, or (2) in the case of a defendant convicted after a trial, the court has determined there is a reasonable probability the verdict would have been more favorable to the defendant; or
    • The judgment was obtained in violation of a right of the defendant under the constitution of the State of New York or of the United States; or
    • The judgment was for certain prostitution offenses where the defendant’s participation was a result of being a victim of sex trafficking.

    Thus, the circumstances in which a 440 motion can be filed are quite specific. Moreover, even when the above circumstances are met, the court must deny a motion when:

    • The ground or issue raised in the motion was previously determined on the merits on an appeal;
    • The ground or issue at the time of the filing of the motion is appealable or pending an appeal;
    • Sufficient facts appear in the trial record to serve as a basis for an appeal but no appeal was filed; or
    • The ground or issue relates solely to the validity of the sentence and not the validity of the conviction.

    Although the 440 Motion is limited in its basis for filing, it is nonetheless a very powerful tool in correcting an injustice. If the motion is granted the court will vacate the judgment, dismiss the accusatory instrument (i.e. complaint or indictment) and either order a new trial or take such other actions that are appropriate with the circumstances.

    A successful outcome of a 440 Motion can be the first step towards your bright future. If you have questions and would like to learn more, contact the Law Office of Kevin J. Deloatch, Esq. at (646) 792-2156. The office has an extensive criminal law practice. Call today for a free consultation.

    How to appeal a judgment without an attorney

    It is a myth that you can automatically collect attorney fees and other collection costs after judgment.

    Because garnishments and other post-judgment collection remedies are purely statutory, Judgment Creditors may only collect additional attorney fees as allowed per a statute allowing them or a judgment specifically awarding them. Patrick v. Associated Drygoods Corp., 20 Ariz.App. 6, 509 P.2d 1043 (1973).


    There is no statute that allows a blanket collection of post-judgment attorney fees. In short, post-judgment attorney fees for collection may only be collected if the judgment/order or underlying contract allows for them. Blum v. Cowan, 235 Ariz. 204, 330 P.3d 961(Ct. App. 2014).

    In Blum, the Arizona Court of Appeals held that the Judgment Creditor was not entitled to a post-judgment award of attorney fees based on A.R.S. 12-341.01 even though the action arose from a contract.

    The Court found that garnishment proceedings are an original independent action to enforce a judgment and not to interpret the contract. In sum, attorney fees to obtain the judgment stemming from the interpretation of the contract were awardable, but once the judgment was entered they were not.

    The only time the garnishment statutes provide for an award of post-judgment attorney fees to a Judgment Creditor in a garnishment proceeding is when there is a hearing on the garnishment and the court specifically finds that the Judgment Debtor has objected to the Writ of Garnishment solely for the purpose of delay or to harass the Judgment Creditor. A.R.S. 12-1580.

    Even so, the award of post-judgment attorney fees will only be for the defense of the Judgment Debtor’s objection and not for the fees in preparing the garnishment itself. All of this seems unfair:

    1) the Judgment Creditor is owed money pursuant to a judgment or order, and

    2) the Judgment Creditor has to bear the costs of collecting the judgment without the possibility of compensation. There is nothing in the law that prohibits language in a judgment/order that would allow for the collection of attorney fees and costs post-judgment.

    How to Collect Attorney Fees on a Judgment in an Arizona Divorce

    How to appeal a judgment without an attorney

    Moreover, if the underlying contract states specifically that attorney fees and collection costs may be collected post-judgment then they may be collected and your judge should have no problem including language in your judgment allowing for the collection of post-judgment attorney fees and costs.

    It also never hurts to ask. Worst case your judge says no, but best case your client is able to collect post-judgment attorney fees and costs. Additionally, any Judgment Debtor that objects to this language is really only indicating that the Judgment Debtor is not going to voluntarily pay the amount owed to the Judgment Creditor.

    It is critical to keep all of this in mind when drafting contracts and judgments/ orders.

    Adding language to allow for post-judgment collection of attorney fees and costs will allow you to do so without question. In addition, be sure to specify the interest rate in the judgment/order as it is no longer enough to state “interest to accrue at the statutory rate”.

    Statutory interest rates on judgments now vary and are the lesser of ten percent per annum or the prime rate on the date of the judgment plus 1%. A.R.S. 44-1201. (If the judgment is for child support arrears or spousal maintenance , the judgment accrues interest at 10% per annum on the principal balance. A.R.S. 25-510; A.R.S. 25-500(1).)

    To avoid having to figure out the prime rate as of the date of entry of the judgment, state the specific interest rate in your proposed form of judgment. You can determine the Prime rate on any given day may be determined by visiting www. All interest on judgments accrues simply and does not compound.

    We would like to thank Lisa C. Thompson of the Thompson Law Group for writing this incredibly informative article. Lisa C. Thompson is an Arizona civil litigation attorney practicing in the areas of bankruptcy, business law, collections, construction, and real property disputes. You may reach Lisa C. Thompson at (520)882-5633.

    If you are in need of a Scottsdale or Phoenix Arizona family law attorney, call the attorneys at Hildebrand Law, PC. Our Arizona divorce and family law attorneys have over 100 years of combined experience in divorce and family law cases.

    If you have questions about attorney fees on judgement in an Arizona divorce case, you should seriously consider contacting the attorneys at Hildebrand Law, PC. Our Arizona attorney fee awards and family law attorneys have over 100 years of combined experience successfully representing clients in attorney fee awards and family law cases.

    Our family law firm has earned numerous awards such as US News and World Reports Best Arizona Family Law Firm, US News and World Report Best Divorce Attorneys, “Best of the Valley” by Arizona Foothills readers, and “Best Arizona Divorce Law Firms” by North Scottsdale Magazine.

    Call us today at (480)305-8300 or reach out to us through our appointment scheduling form to schedule your personalized consultation and turn your Arizona attorney fee awards or family law case around today.

    How to appeal a judgment without an attorney

    We’ve previously written about the four phases of civil litigation in Oklahoma. But what happens when the trial is complete? Whether you prevailed in the trial court or not, your case may not be over.

    Oklahoma, like all states, has an appellate system in place designed to correct errors made in the trial court and you — or your opponent — may choose to appeal an adverse judgment.

    There are several steps to a general Oklahoma civil appeal. Each will be discussed briefly below. Please understand, this information relates to a general civil appeal of a final order of a district court in a civil case. There are many other rules that apply to other types of appeals, such as appeals in criminal cases, interlocutory appeals, and many others.

    Pre-Appeal Considerations

    If you are the party holding an adverse judgement, before filing an appeal you will no doubt want to discuss with your trial and appellate lawyer whether you should ask the trial court to reconsider its ruling. However, you must be aware that asking the trial court for post-judgment relief can have disastrous consequences to your appeal, should your post-judgment motion be denied.

    Most notably, if you seek a new trial in the district court, it is critical that you raise every issue that may want to later appeal, as you will only be able to raise on appeal those issues which you raise in your motion for new trial. All other issues will be waived for purposes of appeal.

    Additionally, certain post-trial motions can extend your time to file an appeal, but many do not. Because the failure to appeal within the allotted time is a jurisdictional bar to your appeal, it is absolutely critical that you are certain whether your post-trial motion extends your appeal time or not.

    Filing Your Appeal

    Once you have decided to appeal an order of the trial court, the first step is to file a petition in error with the Oklahoma Supreme Court. This is the instrument that begins your appeal. It is a relative simply document that briefly apprises the Court of the type of case you are appealing, the parties, and provides a general outline of the facts and procedural posture of the case.

    As referenced above, timing is absolutely critical at this stage. For most Oklahoma civil appeals, you have thirty days from the date the challenged order was filed with the district court clerk to file your petition in error.

    The Oklahoma Supreme Court has held that they are without jurisdiction to review the reasons why a petition in error was filed late. Thus, failure to file a petition in error on time acts as an absolute waiver of your right to appeal.

    Compiling the Record

    Concurrently with filing the petition in error, an appellant will also file its designation of record in the trial court. The designation of record tells the clerk of the court below which documents and transcripts to include in the record.

    The opposing party is given an opportunity to designate additional material that the clerk will include in the record on appeal. This is critical stage because the appellate courts will not consider materials outside the record on appeal.

    Thus, a well-constructed record is vital to the appellant’s success. Although it is the clerk of court that compiles the record, the deadline for completing the record — which is six months from the date of the entry of the order under appeal — is charged against the appellant.

    Thus, as an appellant it is important that you work closely with the clerk of the district court and any court reporters working on designated transcripts to ensure that record is completed on time.

    The Briefing Cycle

    Once the record is complete, the appellant will have sixty days to file its brief in chief. The brief in chief the appellant’s opportunity to show the appellate court what errors were made below that justify reversal. After the brief in chief is filed, the appellee is given forty days to file its answer brief. After the answer brief is filed, the appellant is given twenty days to reply to the answer. The reply brief is the final brief filed on appeal.

    Assignment and Opinion

    In nearly all cases, once the briefing is complete, the Oklahoma Supreme Court will assign the case to a division of the Oklahoma Court of Civil Appeals. A three-judge panel will decide the case, and an opinion will be drafted either affirming or reversing the decision below. There is no time limit for the Court of Civil Appeals — or for the Oklahoma Supreme Court, should they elect to retain the case — to issue an opinion.

    Reconsideration and Certiorari

    If the opinion is adverse to you, you have the opportunity ask the rendering court to reconsider its opinion. If you choose not to do so, or if you do so and court denies the relief you seek, you may then, should you have grounds, ask the Oklahoma Supreme Court to review an opinion of the Court of Civil Appeals on certiorari.

    The Oklahoma Supreme Court has the discretion to take the case up on certiorari or not. If the Oklahoma Supreme Court chooses to take the case on certiorari, they may affirm or reverse the Court Civil Appeals. Finally, if you continued to be aggrieved and should you have appropriate grounds for review, you have ninety days to seek consideration, also on discretionary certiorari review, from the Supreme Court of the United States.


    Once an opinion is considered final — meaning that no further requests for reconsideration or certiorari to the Oklahoma Supreme Court are possible — the Oklahoma Supreme Court will issue its mandate. The mandate is the order sending the case back to the lower court for implementation of the appellate court’s order, and further proceedings, if necessary.

    Until the mandate issues, the opinion of the appellate court, be it the opinion of the Oklahoma Court of Civil Appeals or the Oklahoma Supreme Court, is without force and effect.


    The processes and rules governing an Oklahoma civil appeal, just as the litigation that precedes it, can seem complex and daunting. Whether you are a party holding an adverse judgment, faced with the prospect of defending an appeal, or a fellow attorney desiring a consultation, there is no reason to brave this process alone.

    How to appeal a judgment without an attorney

    If you’ve ever read a California Court of Appeal opinion closing out with “each side to bear its own costs on appeal,” you might have presumed that such wording forecloses an award of attorney fees on appeal. It’s okay, you’re probably not alone. And if you have thought that, and still do, now would be a good time to read a recent Court of Appeal decision which holds otherwise.

    Stratton v. Beck (2018) 30 Cal.App.5th 901 illustrates the flaw in such thinking. As the Court of Appeal put it, Stratton is an appeal in an action for $300 in unpaid wages which, “transmogrified into a dispute concerning attorney fees totaling nearly 200 times that amount.” The trial court had affirmed a Labor Commissioner’s award and pursuant to statute, also awarded attorney fees to the plaintiff for prevailing in the trial de novo. The Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s award, in an opinion that ended with “In the interest of justice, the parties are to bear their own costs of appeal.”

    The plaintiff then filed a motion for attorney fees for the appeal. The trial court awarded $57,000 in fees and the defendant appealed yet again. Defendant argued that since attorney fees are included as costs, and the Court of Appeal said each side would bear their own costs, then the plaintiff must have been precluded from obtaining attorney fees for the appeal too.

    The Court of Appeal rejected that argument, pointing out that on appeal, “costs” are governed by Code of Civil Procedure section 1034, not sections 1032/1033.5. Those latter sections apply only to costs incurred at the trial court level. Section 1034 delegates the formulation of appellate costs to the Judicial Council. And, as Stratton noted, “Rule 8.278(d)(2) states that ‘Unless the [appellate] court orders otherwise, an award of costs neither includes attorney’s fees on appeal nor precludes a party from seeking them under rule 3.1702.’ The plain meaning of rule 8.278(d)(2) is that an award of costs in the court of appeal generally has no bearing on a party’s ability to seek appellate attorney fees in the trial court.” (Emphasis added.)

    The upshot is that if there is basis for attorney fees at trial, then attorney fees will be available on appeal, and a Court of Appeal’s disposition of “costs” has nothing to do with attorney fees. At least, not unless the Court of Appeal’s disposition expressly addresses them.

    Considering Standards of Review When Filing an Appeal in New Jersey

    Once a lawsuit has reached the point where an appeal is being considered, litigants have undoubtedly made a considerable investment of time and money. If the case involves a personal matter, like a will and estate dispute, a criminal conviction or a divorce, a considerable emotional effort has surely been made as well. While the outlook on appeal always depends on the unique factual and legal merits of each case, the applicable standard or standards of review loom large when it comes to analyzing the possibility of winning on appeal. This post will look at a useful example of this: a civil matter that has been decided by the entry of an order granting summary judgment.

    Appealing a Judge’s Granting of Summary Judgment

    By way of example, consider a civil matter in Superior Court in New Jersey that has been resolved through the granting of a summary judgment motion. Assuming the amount at issue is large enough to justify the cost of the appeal, and there are legitimate arguments to make on appeal, the relevant standard of review weighs in favor of pursuing the appeal.

    Specifically, the Appellate Division judges will review the summary judgment motion on its merits without deference to the decision of the trial court. In other words, the judges on the appeals panel considering the appeal will not assume that the trial court made the right decision. Instead, the appeals panel will apply the same standard as the trial court. The evidence submitted in connection with the motion will be viewed in the light most favorable to the “non-moving” party. The appeals court will then decide whether any genuine issues of material fact exist. Since the party that lost the summary judgment motion is most likely the one filing the appeal, this means that the evidence will be viewed in the light most favorable to the party filing the appeal. Compared to most other standards of review on appeal in New Jersey, this is a relatively favorable standard.

    Even if the appeals panel agrees with the trial court that no questions of fact exist, the appeals panel will review the correctness of the trial court’s rulings on the law if the appealing party challenges them. In looking at these legal rulings, the appeals panel will again not assume the trial court made the right decision. Once again, for the party pursuing the appeal, this is a good thing.

    The Favorable Standard When An Appeal is From an Order Granting Summary Judgment

    The appeal of a summary judgment motion is one of the few circumstances in which a New Jersey appeals court will examine the facts of a case through its own fresh eyes, as opposed to the eyes of the trial level judge or jury. By contrast, the appeals court is, in most other situations, required to assume the findings of the trial level judge or jury are correct, and needs a very compelling reason to disagree with those findings. This is why, relatively speaking, the appeal of a summary judgment motion involves a favorable standard of review.

    How to Decide Whether or Not to Appeal

    The value of what is at stake in a lawsuit necessarily factors heavily into the decision to appeal. A monetary value cannot be placed upon the liberty interests of an individual. If you or a loved one has been convicted of a crime, there is obvious reason to consider an appeal from the conviction. In a civil, commercial or estate dispute, if the money or damages at issue are of a substantial value, the expense of an appeal may also be justifiable. Nonetheless, it makes little sense to proceed blindly with an appeal based solely upon the value of a case and without any consideration of the prospects for success. To be sure, there is no reliable way to predict the outcome of an appeal. However, an appeals attorney will assess the viability of an appeal by analyzing the record at the trial level, identifying errors within that record and considering the standards of review that relate to those issues.

    In a subsequent post, we will take a look at ways to approach an appeal in the appeals courts of New Jersey when the standard of review applicable to fact findings is not so favorable.

    Litigants who wait for the entry of a fees-related judgment before appealing from attorney-fees orders do so at their peril.

    By Josh Jacobson

    After entering judgment on the underlying claims, a federal district court grants the prevailing party’s motion for attorney fees, but does not amend its prior judgment in the case. You represent the potential fees appellant. When does your time to appeal from the attorney-fees order start to run?

    Believe it or not, it started to run as soon as the fees order was entered, because under Fed. R. App. P. 4(a)(7)(A)(i) and Fed. R. Civ. P. 58(a)(3), no “separate document” was required to trigger the fees appeal clock.

    The first appellate case to address the interplay of these rules was Bennett v. City of Holyoke, 362 F.3d 1 (1st Cir. 2004), where the First Circuit held that the entry of award of attorney fees “started the running of the thirty-day period” for appeal, and no separate judgment was required.

    A number of more recent cases also hold that the appeal must be filed within 30 days of the fees order. E.g. Feldman v. Olin Corp., 673 F.3d 515, 516 (7th Cir. 2012) (Posner, J.) (dismissing appeal from attorney fees award as untimely when appeal filed more than 30 days after entry of fees order); S.L. ex rel. Loof v. Upland Unified School Dist., 747 F.3d 1155, 1161 (9th Cir. 2014) (citing the rules discussed above and finding fees appeal untimely); Perez v. AC Roosevelt Food Corp., 744 F.3d 39, 42-43 (2d Cir. 2013) (citing Feldman and finding fees appeal untimely). See also Credit Card Reseller, LLC v. Security Credit Services, LLC, No. 10-3760 (8th Cir. Mar. 11, 2011) (dismissing an appeal from an order awarding attorney fees, where the party had waited more than three months after entry of the order before filing its notice of appeal).

    Given the overwhelming weight of this authority, litigants who wait for the entry of a fees-related judgment before appealing from attorney-fees orders do so at their peril.

    Josh Jacobson is with the Law Office of Josh Jacobson, P.A. in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

    By: Eric Michael Papp, Esq.

    You win! However, in a surprising move, the debtor pays the judgment, but also files a "Notice of Appeal" limited solely to "An order after judgment under Code of Civil Procedure section 904.1(a)(2)." (i.e. for the attorney�s fees and costs). Must the debtor file a bond to stay collection of the fees and costs pending the appeal?

    According to Code of Civil Procedure section 916(a), "Except as provided in Section 917.1 to 917.9, inclusive, and in Section 116.810, the perfecting of an appeal stays proceedings in the trial court upon the judgment or order appealed from or upon the matters embraced therein or affected thereby, including enforcement of the judgment or order, but the trial court may proceed upon any other matter embraced in the action and not affected by the judgment or order." Essentially, as to matters affected by the appealed judgment or order, the trial court�s power to enforce the appealed judgment or order is suspended while the appeal is pending. ( Varian Med. Systems, Inc. v. Delfino (2005) 35 Cal.4th 180, 189; Waremart Foods v. United Food & Comm�s Workers Union, Local 58 8 (2001) 87 Cal.App.4th 145, 154.)

    Moreover, subdivision (d) of CCP � 917.1 provides in pertinent part, ". However, no undertaking shall be required pursuant to this section solely for costs awarded under Chapter 6 (commencing with Section 1021) of Title 14." Further clarifying this issue, the court in Ziello v. Super. Ct. (First Fed�l Bank of Calif.) (1999) 75 Cal.App.4th 651, 655, stated the following in footnote number 2: "Section 1021 is the first provision of chapter 6, "Of Costs," which in turn is part of title 14, "Miscellaneous Provision." Section 1033.5, also part of chapter 6, includes attorney�s fees authorized by a contract as an item of costs (subd. (a)(10)(A)). Civil Code section 1717, under which the attorney�s fee award in this case was made, provides for reciprocity in contract-authorized attorney�s fees: if the contract allows fees to one party if it prevails in an action arising from the contract, another party, adverse to the first, is entitled to fees if it prevails. (See Scott v. Blount, Inc. (1999) 20 Cal.4th 1103, 1108.)" ( Ziello , 75 Cal.App.4th at 655, FN 2.)

    As such, a judgment solely for costs of suit pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 1021, et seq. is automatically stayed by appeal. (CCP � 917.1(d); Vadas v. Sosnowski (1989) 210 Cal.App.3d 471, 475.) As indicated above, although section 917.1(d) does not expressly refer to attorney fees, when such fees are awarded pursuant to "contract, statute or law," the fee award is included within section 1021 as recoverable costs of suit. (CCP � 1033.5(a)(10)(A), (B), (C) & (c)(5); Dowling v. Zimmerman (2001) 85 Cal.App.4th 1400, 1430; Ziello v. Super. Ct. (First Fed�l Bank of Calif.) (1999) 75 Cal.App.4th 651, 655.)

    In Ziello , a bank appealed only from the judgment that awarded attorneys fees and costs to the bank�s mortgagor as the "prevailing party." It should also be noted that such an award of attorney�s fees and costs is separately appealable. ( Lakin v. Watkins Assoc. Ind., (1993) 6 Cal4th 644, 654.) The appeal at issue in our hypothetical discussion here is likewise only as to the award of attorneys fees and costs. In this regard, the Ziello Court held: "In this case we decide whether a judgment debtor, who pays and does not appeal the amount of the judgment for damages, but who does appeal from the trial court�s order after judgment assessing costs and attorney�s fees, is required to file an appeal bond to stay execution on the unpaid amounts. We conclude that an appeal bond is not required in this situation." ( Ziello , 75 CalApp4th at 652.) This is directly on point. The Ziello Court went on to state, "Since the appeal is limited to the order awarding costs, including attorney�s fees, it is within the exclusion of the final provision of section 917.1, subdivision (d). As we have discussed, that provision eliminates the requirement of an undertaking when the appeal is solely from an award of costs." ( Ziello , 75 CalApp4th at 655.)

    As such, if the debtors have already paid the judgment and are appealing only the attorney’s fee award, collection efforts on the attorney’s fees are stayed automatically, pending the appeal, therefore any collection efforts might potentially be an abuse of process.

    Eric Papp is a licensed attorney in both California and Nevada and a licensed Real Estate Broker. Mr. Papp is the principal of the Law Offices of Eric Michael Papp located at 495 East Rincon, Suite 125, Corona, CA 92879. Mr. Papp can be reached at (951) 279-6700

    Disclaimer: The content of this Article is intended for informational purposes only. It is not intended to solicit business or to provide legal advice. Laws differ by jurisdiction, and the information in this Article may not apply to every reader. You should not take, or refrain from taking, any legal action based upon the information contained in this Article without first seeking professional counsel. Reading or using the information contained in this Article does not, will not and cannot create an attorney-client relationship. Additionally, to the extent permitted by law, The Law Offices of Eric Michael Papp disclaims liability to any person for any loss which may arise from relying on or by using information contained in this Article. Although the information in this Article is intended to be current and accurate, it is not guaranteed or promised to be current, accurate, or complete.

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    A fundamental rule of appellate jurisdiction is the need for a “final” decision. In Michigan, a final judgment or order is typically “the first judgment or order that disposes of all the claims and adjudicates the rights and liabilities of all the parties.” MCR 7.202(6)(a)(i). So what about dismissals “without prejudice,” i.e., dismissals that permit the action potentially to be refiled later? Are those orders immediately appealable as a matter of right? It depends.

    On the one hand, the Michigan Court of Appeals has strongly rebuked the notion that stipulated orders dismissing claims “without prejudice” may be appealed, even if they also dismiss other claims involuntarily. Since an order dismissing less than all of the claims of all of the parties is not a “final order” for the purpose of bringing an appeal as of right, it is tempting to consider stipulating to the dismissal of the remaining claims or counterclaims “without prejudice” or with some other language preserving the ability to reinstate those claims in the event of an appellate reversal. But the Court of Appeals rejected that approach in City of Detroit v Michigan, 262 Mich App 542; 686 NW2d 514 (2004). The Court explained that dismissing claims without prejudice creates the possibility of “piecemeal” appeals, which the court rules are designed to prevent:

    The parties’ stipulation to dismiss the remaining claims without prejudice is not a final order that may be appealed as of right; it does not resolve the merits of the remaining claims and, as such, those claims are “not barred from being resurrected on that docket at some future date.” Wickings v Arctic Enterprises, Inc, 244 Mich App 125, 136; 624 NW2d 197 (2000). The parties’ stipulation to dismiss the remaining claims was clearly designed to circumvent trial procedures and court rules and obtain appellate review of one of the trial court’s initial determinations without precluding further substantive proceedings on the remaining claims. This method of appealing trial court decisions piecemeal is exactly what our Supreme Court attempted to eliminate through the “final judgment” rule.

    On the other hand, the Court has distinguished situations involving dismissals “without prejudice” that are involuntary. In MLive Media Group v City of Grand Rapids, 321 Mich App 263; 909 NW2d 282 (2017), the city of Grand Rapids filed a declaratory action in federal court seeking a determination of its rights and obligations with respect to recordings made of calls to a non-public police department telephone line. While that case was pending, the Grand Rapids Press, which had requests copies of the recordings under Michigan’s Freedom of Information Act, filed a complaint in the Kent County Circuit seeking to compel disclosure of the recordings. The trial court dismissed the claim without prejudice, deferring to the federal action under the doctrine of comity. On appeal, the city argued that the Court of Appeals lacked jurisdiction over the appeal, citing Detroit and arguing that the dismissal without prejudice rendered the trial court’s order non-final. The Court of Appeals disagreed, reasoning that Detroit was distinguishable because it involved claims dismissed by stipulation:

    T]he trial court entered an order denying MLive’s motion for summary disposition and dismissing MLive’s only claim without prejudice after reviewing both parties’ opposing arguments. Therefore, the order is final, MCR 7.202(6)(a)(i), and Detroit is distinguishable on the facts.

    The Court of Appeals has reached a similar result in cases involving dismissals without prejudice in favor of arbitration, so long as the trial court does not retain jurisdiction. See Rooyaker & Sitz, PLLC v Plante & Moran, PLLC, 276 Mich App 146, ; 742 NW2d 409 (2007) (“[B]ecause there was nothing left for the trial court to decide and it did not state that it was retaining jurisdiction [when it dismissed the case in favor of arbitration], we conclude that the trial court’s order was a final order appealable as of right.”).

    The same goes for cases dismissed under the doctrine of primary jurisdiction (i.e., where a case must initially be decided by an administrative agency). See Attorney General v Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, 291 Mich App 64, 75-76; 810 NW2d 603 (2010) (“[T]here was nothing left for the trial court to decide regarding count II after its decision to refer the claim to the OFIR Commissioner, and the trial court did not state in the October 6, 2008, order dismissing that count without prejudice that it was retaining jurisdiction of that count. . . . Therefore, here as in Rooyakker, there was nothing left for the trial court to decide, and all claims were finally ‘disposed’ of within the meaning of MCR 7.202(6)(a)(i).”).

    As cases like MLive, Rooyaker, and Attorney General demonstrate (and likely others), dismissing a case “without prejudice” does not necessarily prevent an order from being appealed as a matter of right. So long as the dismissal order was not stipulated to, and the trial court did not retain jurisdiction, there is an argument that the order is final and may be appealed.

    This client alert is published by Dickinson Wright PLLC to inform our clients and friends of important developments in the field of appellate law. The content is informational only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. We encourage you to consult a Dickinson Wright attorney if you have specific questions or concerns relating to any of the topics covered in here.

    *A version of this article was previously published in the Michigan Defense Quarterly, Vol. 35, No. 2 (2018).

    Adjudication is the term for the final decision in a disputed case. In criminal law, a “stay of adjudication” is a type of deferred judgment, which may allow someone to avoid jail time and keep their public record clear. In bankruptcy, adjudication is the final decree between the debtor and creditors. Adjudication in unemployment is the determination of whether a claimant is eligible for benefits.

    Adjudication can mean different things in different states. It may apply to criminal law, bankruptcy, and even disability benefit law. We recommend contacting a litigation and appeals attorney where you live to help answer legal questions about a notice of adjudication.

    Key Takeaways

    • Adjudication is the final judgment in a disputed case.
    • A stay of adjudication is like deferred judgment, as an alternative to a criminal conviction.
    • The unemployment agency may determine whether a worker can get benefits through adjudication.

    Understanding Adjudication

    Adjudication happens in several types of legal proceedings. In general, it refers to a legal determination or judgment. The adjudication is usually the end of the claim or matter, but it can be appealed. Adjudication may include:

    • Stay of adjudication or deferred judgment
    • Withholding of adjudication
    • Adjudication in unemployment claims
    • Adjudication in bankruptcy

    What Is a Stay of Adjudication?

    In a stay of adjudication, the defendant pleads guilty but the guilty plea is not accepted by the court. Instead of a conviction, the judge usually requires the defendant to complete a term of probation. If the defendant successfully completes the terms of probation, the charges will be dismissed with no criminal conviction on the defendant’s criminal record. A stay of adjudication is also referred to as:

    • Withholding of adjudication
    • Deferred judgment
    • Pretrial diversion
    • Deferred adjudication
    • Probation before judgment
    • Adjournment in contemplation of dismissal

    What Does Adjudication Withheld Mean?

    Adjudication withheld is the same as a stay of adjudication. In Florida, for example, criminal judges have the authority to withhold adjudication of a criminal offense and require probation instead of a criminal conviction. If the defendant complies with the probation program, the judge will release the defendant from additional sentencing at the end of the probationary period. A withholding of adjudication is generally used for first-time offenders and minor or non-violent offenses.

    Adjudication and Unemployment

    Adjudication in unemployment is the legal process of determining whether someone is eligible to receive unemployment benefits. Each state has specific requirements for unemployment compensation eligibility. Depending on the situation, an unemployment claim may be adjudicated because the applicant:

    • Voluntarily quit their job
    • Was fired for misconduct
    • Was not able to or available to work
    • Refused suitable work
    • Failed to report compensation

    If an applicant receives notice of adjudication after applying for benefits, it may delay their claim. In some cases, it may take weeks or months before the claim is adjudicated, leaving claimants without benefits or income.

    Adjudication can also be the process of an employer evaluating an applicant’s criminal background check and criminal history.

    Adjudication and Bankruptcy

    Adjudication is also the term used in settling a bankruptcy case. In a bankruptcy claim, the defendant and the creditors can settle the case in an adjudication process. This makes a final plan for what the defendant owes the creditors and the creditors release the defendant from further claims.

    What Is an Adjudication Hearing?

    An adjudication hearing can be another term for a trial. In a juvenile justice matter, criminal court case, or civil claim, an adjudication hearing is where the parties present their case to the jury and/or judge. The finder of fact, a judge or jury, will make a decision to adjudicate the matter. In criminal cases, the final adjudication will generally result in either a guilty or not guilty verdict. The adjudication is the final determination but the parties may still have the right to appeal the decision.

    How Long Does Adjudication Take?

    The time period for adjudication may be based on several factors, including the complexity of the case and the court’s caseload. For example, in an unemployment adjudication case, the COVID-19 pandemic added further delays for adjudication, causing some claimants to wait months before their case was finally decided. If you have questions about how long adjudication may take in your case, contact your attorney for advice.

    Adjudication can also be used in claims for disability benefits. When someone applies for disability benefits and their social security benefits are denied, the applicant may have the case reviewed by an administrative law judge. In Texas, the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review conducts SSD and SSI hearings. However, the waiting period or period of time for a hearing may be up to one year or more.

    How to appeal a judgment without an attorney

    A: It is entirely too late to answer this question. A notice of appeal must be filed within 30 days. If it is a money judgment only, a bond must be posted.

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    It happened when i was homeless and was not notified about it.

    How to appeal a judgment without an attorney

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    A: If you want to appeal, you have to do so within 30 calendar days of the date of the judgment that was entered against you. The form you want is the SC-140, which is available online as a PDF. However, if you were not notified about the case, then you may want to vacate the judgment as opposed to appealing it. The form to vacate is the SC-135. The deadline within which to file the SC-135 varies and is either 30 days or 180 days, depending on the facts of the case. If you can prove that you were not notified about the case because you were homeless and you can prove that, then you may qualify for the 180 days. Good luck.

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    How to appeal a judgment without an attorney

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    Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

    The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

    Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.

    After your federal agency sends you the Report of Investigation (ROI) in your federal EEO case , you have several options, including requesting a Final Agency Decision (FAD). Here are some things to consider if you’re requesting a FAD:

    What is a final agency decision (FAD)?

    A FAD is the agency’s written decision on your case. It should evaluate each of your claims in detail and explain why the agency decided you were or were not discriminated against.

    How do I request a final agency decision (FAD)?

    You can request a FAD after you get the ROI. The agency may include a FAD request form when it sends you the ROI. If the agency doesn’t send you a FAD request form, you can contact the agency by email, fax, or mail and ask for a FAD. If you don’t request an EEOC hearing within 30 days of receiving the ROI, the agency will automatically issue a FAD.

    What is the final agency decision timeline?

    The agency should issue the FAD within 60 calendar days of the date it receives your request. If you initially requested an EEOC hearing, and then asked for a FAD instead, the administrative judge should order the agency to issue a FAD within 60 days. However, agencies don’t always issue the FAD on time. If the agency fails to meet its deadline, you may ask the OFO to sanction the agency.

    How do I appeal the final agency decision?

    Within 30 days of receiving the FAD, you must file a Notice of Appeal with the OFO within 30 days of receiving the FAD. You can file your Notice of Appeal through the EEOC’s Public Portal, by mail, or by fax. Also, send a copy of your Notice of Appeal to the agency.

    Within 30 days of the date you filed your Notice of Appeal, you may file a Brief in Support of your Appeal. The brief is a comprehensive, detailed written explanation of why the FAD is wrong. It should include a statement of facts, a legal argument, and a conclusion:

    What to include in the statement of facts

    List all important facts in your case, such as:

    • The protected class that is the basis of your complaint (your age, disability, national origin, race, religion, sex, )
    • Who discriminated against you
    • When the discrimination occurred
    • How the agency discriminated against you (what the person said or did, how you responded, where this happened, whether there were any witnesses, )
    • Why you believe the discrimination was based on your protected class

    You should cite pages in the ROI to support each fact.

    What to include in the legal argument

    Explain why the agency’s decision was wrong. It’s helpful to cite to other EEOC cases where the EEOC concluded that an agency discriminated against an employee in similar circumstances.

    What to include in the conclusion

    Explain what you want the OFO to do. For example, say the FAD said the agency didn’t discriminate against you by not giving you a promotion. In your conclusion, you can ask the OFO to reverse the FAD, find that the agency discriminated against you, and award you a retroactive promotion, lost pay and benefits, compensatory damages, interest, attorney’s fees, and costs.

    How can an attorney help me appeal a final agency decision?

    Hiring an attorney for your EEOC hearing may greatly increase your chance of success. Your lawyer will file your notice of appeal, draft a supporting brief, and file a reply, if necessary. An attorney can file a motion to sanction the agency for failing to meet deadlines or follow other rules.

    How to appeal a judgment without an attorney

    Pennsylvania law provides an efficient remedy for a judgment creditor with a judgment in one state to domesticate that judgment in Pennsylvania for enforcement against a debtor or a debtor’s assets in Pennsylvania. The statute is 42 Pa.C.S.A. 4306 and is called the “Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act”.

    The Act defines a “foreign judgment” as any judgment, decree, or order of a court of the United States or of any other court requiring payment of money which is entitled to full faith and credit in Pennsylvania. The Act provides a simple mechanism for domesticating a foreign judgment. To domesticate a foreign judgment, a Pennsylvania attorney can file an authenticated copy of the out-of-state judgment and the docket entries incidental thereto with the appropriate Pennsylvania county court of common pleas. The appropriate county for domesticating a foreign judgment is the county in which the debtor resides or the county in which the debtor’s assets (e.g. real property) are located.

    Pennsylvania law considers a judgment and docket entries as properly authenticated when accompanied by a certification from the transferor court’s clerk which 1) states the documents were authentic, 2) includes the clerk’s seal, 3) discloses that the clerk is in possession of the originals, and 4) signed by the clerk. All the docket entries from the original action are not necessary. Only those docket entries that directly affect the foreign judgment are needed.

    A judgment creditor should hire a Pennsylvania attorney to file the foreign judgment. An out of state attorney who is not licensed to practice in Pennsylvania could be subject to a claim for the unauthorized practice of law.

    At the time of filing of the foreign judgment, the Act requires an affidavit setting forth the name and last known address of the judgment debtor and the judgment creditor along with a statement that the foreign judgment is valid, enforceable and unsatisfied. The affidavit can be signed by the judgment creditor or the attorney. Upon filing, the clerk will mail notice of the filing to the judgment debtor at the address provided. The attorney for the judgment creditor can also mail notice to the judgment debtor. While this is not necessary, it is good practice to do so to avoid potentially time-consuming administrative difficulties.

    The judgment debtor can seek a stay of execution. The Court may require posting of security for satisfaction of the judgment. A stay of execution may be granted when the judgment debtor shows that an appeal from the foreign judgment is pending or will be taken or that a stay of execution was granted in the original state.

    The judgment debtor can also try to invalidate the foreign judgment. Foreign judgments are presumed to be valid unless the judgment debtor can prove that the transferor court lacked jurisdiction or that there was a deprivation of due process.

    How to appeal a judgment without an attorney

    While obtaining a judgment against a debtor is sometimes necessary for collecting money, a judgment does not automatically obligate the debtor to pay. In order to collect on a judgment, it usually needs to be enforced against the judgment debtor. A properly domesticated foreign judgment in Pennsylvania has the same effect and is subject to the same procedures and defenses as a judgment of a court in which the judgment was originally entered. In other words, once a judgment is properly domesticated in Pennsylvania, the judgment creditor can proceed with enforcement of the money judgment as if the judgment was originally obtained in Pennsylvania.

    In Pennsylvania, enforcement of a judgment often begins with due diligence on the part of the judgment creditor and the attorney. Collection attorneys often perform bank account searches with the assistance of an investigator. A search of real estate records is another common enforcement step. It is important to note that a properly filed foreign judgment will automatically attach as lien on any real property owned solely by the judgment debtor in the county in which the judgment was filed.

    When assets are discovered, enforcement of the judgment requires the filing and service of a Writ of Execution. The Writ is issued by the Court and instructs the sheriff to take or seize property of the judgment debtor. This can include a bank levy, personal property levy, or actions against real property.

    to pass one’s judgment on / upon smth — высказывать свое суждение / судить о чем-л.

    to vacate judgment — аннулировать / отменять приговор

    См. также в других словарях:

    judgment — A sense of knowledge sufficient to comprehend nature of transaction. Thomas v. Young, 57 App. D.C. 282, 22 F.2d 588, 590. An opinion or estimate. McClung Const. Co. v. Muncy, Tex.Civ.App., 65 S.W.2d 786, 790. The formation of an opinion or notion … Black’s law dictionary

    judgment — A sense of knowledge sufficient to comprehend nature of transaction. Thomas v. Young, 57 App. D.C. 282, 22 F.2d 588, 590. An opinion or estimate. McClung Const. Co. v. Muncy, Tex.Civ.App., 65 S.W.2d 786, 790. The formation of an opinion or notion … Black’s law dictionary

    Jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice — The International Court of Justice has jurisdiction in two types of cases: contentious issues between states in which the court produces binding rulings between states that agree, or have previously agreed, to submit to the ruling of the court;… … Wikipedia

    The Seal of Confession — The Law of the Seal of Confession † Catholic Encyclopedia ► The Law of the Seal of Confession In the Decretum of the Gratian who compiled the edicts of previous councils and the principles of Church law which he published about 1151,… … Catholic encyclopedia

    The Sacrament of Penance — The Sacrament of Penance † Catholic Encyclopedia ► The Sacrament of Penance Penance is a sacrament of the New Law instituted by Christ in which forgiveness of sins committed after baptism is granted through the priest s absolution to… … Catholic encyclopedia

    judgment — judg·ment also judge·ment / jəj mənt/ n 1 a: a formal decision or determination on a matter or case by a court; esp: final judgment in this entry compare dictum, disposition … Law dictionary

    appeal — ap·peal 1 /ə pēl/ n [Old French apel, from apeler to call, accuse, appeal, from Latin appellare]: a proceeding in which a case is brought before a higher court for review of a lower court s judgment for the purpose of convincing the higher court… … Law dictionary

    The Oxford Movement (1833-1845) — The Oxford Movement (1833 1845) † Catholic Encyclopedia ► The Oxford Movement (1833 1845) The Oxford Movement may be looked upon in two distinct lights. The conception which lay at its base, according to the Royal Commission on… … Catholic encyclopedia

    final — fi·nal adj 1: ending a court action or proceeding leaving nothing further to be determined by the court or to be done except execution of the judgment but not precluding appeal used of an order, decision, judgment, decree, determination, or… … Law dictionary

    The Roman Congregations — The Roman Congregations † Catholic Encyclopedia ► The Roman Congregations Certain departments have been organized by the Holy See at various times to assist it in the transaction of those affairs which canonical discipline and the… … Catholic encyclopedia

    The Church — The Church † Catholic Encyclopedia ► The Church The term church (Anglo Saxon, cirice, circe; Modern German, Kirche; Sw., Kyrka) is the name employed in the Teutonic languages to render the Greek ekklesia (ecclesia), the term by which… … Catholic encyclopedia


    The Court has prepared materials to assist a pro se party who has a case pending in the Court. This document describes general information for pro se cases. In addition, there are instructions for each type of case that can be appealed – Civil, Criminal, Agency, and Prisoner Claims. Also, there are forms that a pro se party must submit to the Court to proceed with the appeal. The instructions and forms are posted on the Court’s website. One copy of the instructions and forms are sent by mail to the pro se party at the beginning of the case. Use these materials to prepare the appeal.

    A pro se party is a person who is not represented by an attorney. An incorporated business, including a corporation held by one person, may not appear as a pro se party in this Court. A corporation must be represented by counsel in order to participate in an appeal.

    If a lawyer files a case on his or her own behalf as a pro se matter, the Court will treat the case as a counseled appeal. Accordingly, the lawyer must seek admission to this Court, register as Filing User to file all documents electronically, and file an acknowledgment and notice of appearance.

    Every person who files a case in this Court must follow the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure ("FRAP"), the Court's Local Rules ("LR") and applicable statutes and case law. FRAP, the LRs, and all relevant Court forms are available on the Court’s website.

    If a question arises in this case, first check the instructions. If the answer does not appear in the instructions, call the case manager assigned to your case. The name and contact information is on the docketing notice sent to each party at the beginning of the case.


    A pro se party appealing from a district court decision must file a notice of appeal and pay the docket fee or file for in forma pauperis ("IFP") status in the district court as described in the Instructions for the type of case being appealed. The pro se party is called the "appellant" in such matters.

    A pro se party challenging an administrative agency final decision must file a petition for review and pay the docket fee or file for IFP status in the Court of Appeals, as described in the instructions for Agency cases. The pro se party is called the "petitioner" in such matters.

    A pro se appellant or petitioner must file Form B or Form D. A pro se party does not file Form, C or C-A, however, because a case that involves a pro se party is not eligible for the pre-argument mediation process known as CAMP.

    In a case in which the appellant or petitioner is pro se, the district court clerk or agency files the record on appeal, including the transcript if required. Note that in an appeal from the district court decision, if the case requires a transcript and IFP status is not granted, the appellant must pay for the transcript.

    Within 14 days of receiving the Court of Appeals docketing notice, a pro se party must file with the Court an Acknowledgment and Notice of Appearance Form according to the directions provided in the Instructions.


    If a pro se party who is an inmate is confined in an institution that has a system designed for handling legal mail, a notice of appeal and any other paper the inmate may file with the Court and serve by mail on the adversary is timely if it is deposited in the institution’s internal mail system on or before the last day for filing. In addition, the paper mailed to the Court and the adversary must either (1) include a notarized statement or declaration stating under penalty of perjury the date of deposit with the internal mail system and that first-class postage is being prepaid, or (2) bear evidence such as a postmark or date stamp showing the date of deposit and prepaid postage. If not provided, the Court in its discretion may permit the inmate to file the statement or declaration later. Form 7, Declaration of Inmate Filing, which suggests a form for the declaration, can be found on the Court's website.


    At any point during the case, a pro se party who submits a paper that an attorney has drafted in whole or substantial part must include at the beginning of the paper the following statement: “This document was drafted in whole, or substantial part, by an attorney.” Unless the Court orders otherwise, the pro se party does not have to disclose the attorney’s identity and address.


    Within 14 days after the appellant or petitioner receives the completed transcript or certifies that no transcript will be ordered in the case, the appellant must file with the Court a scheduling notification advising the Court when appellant or petitioner’s brief and appendix will be filed. LR 31.2.

    The instructions explain how to file the scheduling notification, prepare the brief and appendix and file the documents with the Court.

    It is important to file the brief and appendix by the date given in the scheduling notification. The Court does not grant requests to extend the time to file a brief or appendix unless the reason for the request is extraordinary.


    Within 14 days after the last appellee or respondent’s brief is filed, each party, including a pro se party, must file with the Court an Oral Argument Statement. See LR 34.1(a).

    The Court may choose to determine any case on the submission of the briefs, i.e., without oral argument. When the Court decides to hear an appeal on submission, the clerk informs the parties. Certain types of immigration appeals are routinely determined by the Court on submission of the briefs.

    Each set of instructions explains the Court’s practices regarding oral argument.


    When the Court issues (1) an opinion pursuant to which a final judgment is entered or (2) a summary order and judgment disposing of the appeal, a party may file a petition asking that the panel of three judges rehear the case. A party also may file a petition for rehearing en banc which asks that all the active judges on the Court rehear the case.

    When the Court disposes of an appeal by a final three-judge order without entry of a separate judgment, a party may file a motion for panel reconsideration and a motion for reconsideration en banc. See LR 40.2. The motion must comply with the requirements for filing a petition for rehearing or rehearing en banc.

    Also, within 14 days after the Court files the decision in a case, the winning party may seek costs of bringing or defending the appeal against the losing party. If the United States is a party in the case, costs may be assessed only if authorized by law.

    Within 90 days after the Court files the judgment or denies a petition for rehearing, a party may file a petition for a writ of certiorari with the United States Supreme Court.

    The Court’s authority to handle a case, called jurisdiction, ends when the Court issues the mandate to the district court or agency. The mandate usually issues either 21 days (52 days if the United States is a party) after the decision is filed or 7 days after the petition for rehearing is denied.