Columbia Appeals Lawyer

If you have been convicted of a crime, a seasoned Columbia appeals lawyer may be able to help you challenge your conviction through the South Carolina appeals process. This can apply to both state and federal convictions. No new evidence is introduced during the appeals process. Instead, a skilled defense attorney can argue that the trial court either incorrectly applied the law, or that your rights were violated and denied. A lawyer can use any transcript of legal arguments, testimony, and documents that were presented at the trial to prove their argument and fight for your rights. Read on to learn more about how an experienced Columbia appeals lawyer could make a difference in your case.

Grounds for Appeal

There are several grounds for appeal that a knowledgeable Columbia appeals attorney may use, including prosecutorial misconduct, preserved legal errors for appellate review, the discovery of new evidence, and ineffective assistance of counsel.

Prosecutorial Misconduct

Unfortunately, prosecutorial misconduct is becoming one of the more common reasons convictions are overturned on appeal. When the prosecutor or law enforcement intentionally withholds evidence, allows false testimony, or engages in any other illegal acts, it can be strong grounds for an appeal.

Preserved Legal Errors for Appellate Review

Appellate courts can review legal errors that are preserved by the convicted individual’s attorney during the trial. For example, issues related to constitutional violations (i.e., illegal search and seizure) or improper testimony and evidence admitted during the trial.

Discovery of New Evidence

In many cases, critical evidence that could have helped the convicted individual’s case was unknown by the defense lawyer during the original hearing. This can happen because of new evidence discovered, such as DNA testing in a sexual assault case that proves someone’s innocence. In other cases, evidence may not have been turned over to the defense lawyer by the prosecutor–a fact that perhaps was not discovered until after the trial and conviction.

Ineffective Assistance of Counsel

Although there are many good lawyers, some attorneys fail to provide the best defense possible. This is particularly true for lawyers who practice in several areas of law instead of just focusing on one. Each area of law is always changing, and this is especially true for criminal law. A reliable appeals lawyer who practices criminal law needs to be informed of statute changes, reforms, methods of evidence collection, and other factors that can and do affect the outcome of criminal investigations and trials.

Filing an Appeal

It is important to note that there are certain time limitations and requirements for filing both state and federal conviction appeals. This is why retaining a dedicated appeals lawyer in Columbia is crucial. Appeals require intensive research of evidence and transcripts to ensure a solid argument is presented to the appeals court. While some individuals may consider filing an appeal without a lawyer, know that failure to follow the requirements and file before the deadline often results in an unsuccessful or denied appeal.

Contact a Professional Columbia Appeals Lawyer Today

A distinguished Columbia appeals lawyer can go over the minutia of your case in detail in order to determine whether or not your circumstances could merit an appeal. If they do, a new trial has the potential to change the outcome of your conviction entirely. If you believe your case deserves a new trial, reach out to a weathered Columbia appeals lawyer today to set up your initial consultation.