A guilty verdict is not necessarily the end of your legal case. Mistakes may have been made during your trial resulting in a wrongful conviction. A conviction appeal is your chance to remedy this wrong.
Our criminal appeals lawyers can advise whether you have grounds for a conviction appeal. If so, we can manage the entire process for you. You only have 30 days to file notice of your appeal and the 30 days starts from the date you are sentenced. Early legal advice is essential.
Can I appeal my conviction?
You can only appeal your conviction if the court made mistakes during your trial and the mistakes affected the outcome. We understand that a guilty verdict is upsetting, but this is not necessarily grounds for an appeal. There must have been a legal error that resulted in an unreasonable verdict or miscarriage of justice.
Grounds for a conviction appeal include:
- The trial judge applied the law incorrectly during your case
- Evidence was used improperly or should have been excluded
- The evidence did not prove your guilt beyond reasonable doubt
- The judge made a mistake when giving directions to the jury
- There was a misapprehension of the evidence
To find out if you can appeal your conviction, contact us at Mickelson & Whysall Law Corporation. We specialize in criminal appeals and can clarify the options available to you.
30 day time limit
Conviction appeals must be submitted within 30 days of sentencing. This does not leave very much time to prepare your appeal. That is why you must speak to an appeal lawyer at the earliest available opportunity – preferably as soon as the ‘guilty’ verdict is passed. You may be able to apply for an extension if you miss this deadline, but there must be a good reason for the delay.
What happens when I appeal a conviction?
If your appeal has merit, our lawyers will handle everything for you. This includes submitting a Notice of Appeal and preparing a factum, which is a written argument in support of your appeal. The court will review the judgment, transcripts, factums of Crown and Defence as well as the oral arguments at the appeal hearing. The process can take several months. We can apply for bail pending appeal to ensure you are out-of-custody while your appeal proceeds. When bail is granted, you will be allowed to leave custody until your appeal is heard.
A date will be set for an appeal hearing, during which a higher court will review the trial judge’s decision. An appeal is not the same thing as a trial and witnesses will not be called; rather the trial record is reviewed. Each side will present their argument, following which the appeal judge will decide whether mistakes were made during your case. If so, the appeal court may order a re-trial or overturn the original verdict.
Start your conviction appeal today
Conviction appeals are complex. The lawyers at Mickelson & Whysall are experienced in all levels of criminal appeals. We understand just how much is riding on your appeal and will do everything we can to secure your freedom.