Texas Appeals Lawyer Explains What You Should Know
Attorney John Helms discusses the art and science behind the criminal appeals process in Texas the importance of building a winning argument based on the law of appeals.
Dallas, TX / June 14, 2019 / -- Unless the defendant has given up the right to appeal as part of a plea bargain, a criminal defendant in Texas has the right to appeal to the court of appeals for the region serving the county where the trial court was located. For example, cases from Collin, Dallas, Grayson, Hunt, Kaufman, and Rockwall Counties are appealed to the Fifth Court of Appeals in Dallas.
In my experience as a criminal defense attorney, most people don’t understand what a criminal appeal involves. Many people think that an appeal is almost like a second opinion—that you can just try to see if you can convince another judge or judges to change the result. This is not the case at all. Our legal system does not want trial courts to be second-guessed and cases to have to go to trial over and over. For this reason, the law of appeals generally says that what happened at the trial court cannot be overturned on appeal unless there was a serious problem that affected the fundamental fairness of the trial. Put another way, on many issues, even if the appeals court judges might disagree with what happened at the trial court, they will not overturn it if reasonable people could differ.
There’s a science and art to winning criminal appeal arguments. The science involves knowing what kind of issues to raise to be successful in winning an appeal. While the art of criminal appeals focuses more on persuasion — convincing the court of appeals that the issue means that the result at trial needs to be changed. One of the most important parts of a criminal appeal is the written arguments that lawyers make to the court, which is why you need to hire a Dallas criminal appeals lawyer.
If you or a loved one have been convicted of a crime after a state trial or in federal court, get in touch with the Law Office of John Helms in Dallas today.
About Attorney John M. Helms
Attorney John Helms is an experienced criminal appeals lawyer in Dallas, TX. As a former prosecutor, Helms is uniquely positioned to evaluate cases from both sides and anticipate his opponents’ moves – ensuring the best possible outcome for his clients. For more information visit: johnhelms.attorney
Attorney John Helms