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Austin Appeals Lawyer

Ensuring You Received a Fair Trial

Being convicted of a criminal offense might not be the last word in regards to your case. If you feel your trial at the lower court was not done properly, you have the right to challenge the judgment and potentially have it reversed or a new trial ordered. The process is called an appeal. An appeal requires that an argument be presented to a higher court, demonstrating that legal errors occurred during the initial proceedings that resulted in your guilty verdict and sentencing. If true justice was not served, you might prevail at the higher court.

At Smith & Vinson Law Firm, our Austin appeals attorneys are here to guide you through the complexities involved in getting the lower court’s judgment overturned. Backed by extensive legal experience, we know how to develop compelling briefs to present to the appellate court reviewing your case. Our firm is committed to providing the highest levels of legal representation. To that end, we will answer your questions about the process, help you understand what to expect, and will thoroughly review the trial court’s transcript and relevant case law to develop a cogent brief challenging the judgment or sentencing you received.

Find out if your case merits an appeal by contacting us at (512) 359-3743or through our online request formtoday.

Grounds for an Appeal in Texas

In any criminal case, only you, as the defendant, have the right to appeal the trial court’s decision regarding its guilty verdict or sentencing. Your appeal must be based on legal errors made during the entire lower court’s proceedings. When you appeal a decision, you are asking the higher court to review the lower court’s judgment in light of an issue that occurred.

Because an appeal is not a new trial, you cannot present any new evidence or witnesses to support your assertions. The appellate court’s determination is based on the testimony and evidence admitted at trial and on written or verbal arguments that your attorneys will submit stating your claims, which will refer to relevant case law.

An appeal must be based on legal or procedural errors, such as:

  • Constitutional violations
  • Misinterpreting or misapplying the law
  • Improperly instructing jurors
  • Permitting inadmissible evidence
  • Providing ineffective defense counsel
  • Allowing prosecutor misconduct
  • Wrongdoing committed by jurors

After reviewing the written or verbal briefs that it hears from both sides, the appellate court will decide whether the lower court did make errors in applying or interpreting the law. The appellate may reverse the lower court’s decision based on those facts. The errors must be important enough to have influenced the lower court’s decision; harmless errors that had no real bearing on the outcome will not be enough to win an appeal.

If the higher court validates the lower court’s decision or simply dismisses your appeal, your case will end there unless you wish to appeal to an even higher court. If the appellate court rules in your favor, it will likely send your case back down (remand) to the lower court for further action. The new action may be to order another trial, to take steps to modify the judgment or sentencing, or some other form of correction. Or the appellate court may reverse the lower court’s decision.

Appeals differ from trial cases in that more than one judge is involved, the case generally rests on how well briefs are written and oral arguments backed up, and is based on the record of the lower court’s proceedings.

Why Choose Smith & Vinson Law Firm for Your Appeal?

When it comes to handling appeals, experience and expertise are crucial. At Smith & Vinson Law Firm, our team of skilled Austin appeals lawyers has a proven track record of success in overturning convictions and securing favorable outcomes for our clients. We understand the complexities of the appeals process and are dedicated to providing strong and strategic representation for each case.

Here's why you should choose our Austin criminal appeal lawyers :

  • Extensive experience in handling appeals in Texas courts
  • Thorough understanding of the legal grounds for appeal in criminal cases
  • Personalized and attentive representation tailored to your specific situation
  • Proven success in securing favorable outcomes for our clients
  • Complimentary initial consultation to discuss your appeal options

Don't navigate the appeals process alone. When you need the best criminal appeal lawyers in Texas, trust the experienced team at Smith & Vinson Law Firm to fight for your rights and work towards a successful appeal outcome.

Turn to Smith & Vinson Law Firm for Your Appeal

The appeals process is a complicated undertaking that utilizes a different skillset from an attorney. Our Austin appeals lawyers know how to file and write comprehensive legal briefs as well as make compelling oral arguments in such cases.

Need to learn more? Contact usat (512) 359-3743to discuss your case today with our Austin appeals lawyers.

Texas Criminal Appeals FAQ

What is the process for appealing a criminal conviction in Austin, TX?

To appeal a criminal conviction in Austin, TX, you must demonstrate legal errors that occurred during the initial proceedings that resulted in your guilty verdict and sentencing. An appeal requires presenting an argument to a higher court, without presenting new evidence or witnesses, based on the testimony and evidence admitted at trial and written or verbal arguments submitted by attorneys.

What happens if the appellate court rules in my favor?

If the appellate court rules in your favor, it may send your case back down to the lower court for further action, such as ordering another trial, modifying the judgment or sentencing, or reversing the lower court’s decision.

How is the appeals process different from a trial case?

The appeals process involves more than one judge, relies on the quality of written and oral arguments, and is based on the record of the lower court’s proceedings, rather than presenting new evidence or witnesses.

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  • Smith and Vinson are absolutely incredible! They go above and beyond to help their clients and have a track record of success in getting cases dismissed. Their aggressive approach and unwavering dedication make them stand out from the rest.
    - Linda W.
  • What sets this firm apart is their unwavering dedication to their clients. They listen attentively, provide clear guidance, and approach every case with the utmost diligence. Their attention to detail is truly impressive, and they leave no stone unturned.
    - Former Client
  • When in battle you need people by your side who are fierce enough to face the opposition with you. Brad and Jarod far exceeded my expectations with their passion for winning and attention to detail.
    - Nikki C.
  • After the Jury was selected, the first witness was called to the stand, and Brad and Jarrod imploded the State's case. Moments later, the case was dismissed. I couldn't be any more thankful for Smith & Vinson.
    - Former Client

    A Proven Track Record

    Check Out Our Recent Case Results
    • Case Dismissed Assault Family Violence w/ Strangulation and Injury to a Child

      Our client and his wife had a contentious relationship with his wife’s ex-husband, and, unfortunately, our client’s middle-school aged stepdaughter was caught in the middle. After getting into trouble at home, the stepdaughter falsely accused our client of strangling her.

    • Case Dismissed Felony DWI w/ Child Passenger

      After spending Thanksgiving Day with her family, our client drove home with her daughter in the backseat of her car. She was pulled over for speeding and given a warning. At that point, she should have been free to leave. Instead, a backup officer arrived on scene and demanded that the client step out of the car so he could perform an “investigation.”

    • Case Dismissed Assault Family Violence

      Our client received an arrest warrant for an alleged assault on his brother’s girlfriend. He needed the warrant cleared so that he could be considered for a job he was applying for. Our firm worked with his brother’s girlfriend and found inconsistencies between her statements and those made by our client, his brother, and another eyewitness. We challenged the State’s attorney on these inconsistencies and case was ultimately dismissed.

    • NOT GUILTY Sexual Abuse


    • Case Dismissed Juvenile Sex Assault

      Our client, a young girl, was accused of sexually assaulting her young female cousin. Our client was a good student and was involved in a number of youth and school activities. She had a bright future ahead of her and she and her parents were understandably terrified that an accusation like this could ruin her life forever.

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