TOOL OF THE DAY: Right to appeal

CATEGORY: Family Law

Appellate courts are not required by the constitution.

The formation of these courts was left up to congress and state legislatures in Section I of the United States Constitution.

There are rules the appellate courts follow when evaluating whether or not you have a right to appeal:

1. Is it a final order that you are appealing?

2. Are you appealing within the proper time frame?

3. Does the appellate court have jurisdiction?

4. Did you give the trial court opportunity to rule on the issue?

5. Do you have standing to bring the appeal?

After you can check these off, make sure you also look at any additional requirements in your local and state rules. Some states require that you ask for a new trial before you file for appeal.

Contempt is not considered a final order in the state of Texas, so if you are found in contempt and you want to challenge this order you will have to file a mandamus or a habeas. Habeas is used if you are jailed.

If you are the party who tried to get the court to find the other party in contempt and didn’t succeed, you cannot appeal the decision.