Florida Family Law Appeal

Understanding the Appeal Process in Florida Family Law Cases

Do you feel that a court decision in your family law case was unjust? Or are you worried that upcoming court decisions will not go your way, threatening your future? You’re not alone, and there’s a way to challenge these decisions: the appeal process. While the idea of reversing a court’s ruling may seem daunting, it’s a viable option for those who believe they’ve been wronged.

However, the appeals system is intricate and fraught with legal complexities. That’s where The Bardine Law Firm comes in. Johnny Bardine provides the expertise needed to successfully navigate your appeal and leave you in a great position going forward. Contact our team today at (727) 605-7078 or through our website for a consultation.

What is an Appeal?

An appeal is a legal procedure that allows you to ask a separate court to review and potentially overturn a decision made by the initial judge in your case. The objective is not to rehash the entire case, only to scrutinize whether the law was applied correctly during the initial proceedings.

In the context of family law, divorces, and child custody proceedings, several types of decisions can be appealed, including but not limited to:

  • Custody Arrangements: If you believe the court’s custody decision is not in the best interest of your child.
  • Alimony Payments: Whether you think the alimony awarded is excessive or insufficient.
  • Property Division: If the division of assets and debts seems unfair or not in accordance with Florida laws.
  • Child Support: When the calculated child support does not align with statutory guidelines or the child’s needs.
  • Restraining Orders: If a restraining order was either unjustly granted or denied.

It’s important to note that not all family law decisions can be appealed. For example, temporary orders issued during the course of a divorce proceeding are generally not appealable.

The Appeals Process

Filing an appeal is more complicated than complaining to a judge. Here’s a breakdown of the typical stages involved in filing an appeal in a family law case:

  1. File a Notice of Appeal: This initial document officially starts the appeal process. It must be filed within a specific timeframe, usually 30 days from the final judgment.
  2. Prepare the Record on Appeal: This includes all the documents, transcripts, and evidence presented in the original case. The record is required for the appellate court’s review.
  3. Submit Appellate Briefs: Both parties will prepare and submit written briefs outlining their arguments. These briefs are the cornerstone of the appeal, as they present the legal reasoning for why the decision should be upheld or overturned.
  4. Oral Arguments: Though not always required, some cases may involve presenting oral arguments before the appellate judges.
  5. Appellate Decision: The appellate court will review the case and issue a decision. This could result in the affirmation, reversal, or modification of the original court ruling.

Why You Need an Attorney

The appeals process is a specialized area of law that demands expertise and meticulous attention to detail. Even though we laid out the steps of an appeal, you still likely don’t know where to start. An attorney well-versed in appellate law can be your saving grace. The most important job of an attorney during the appeals process is crafting a legal strategy to convince the judge that parts of the previous ruling need to be changed. This will undoubtedly entail research into prior legal precedents and a deep dive into relevant statutes.

An attorney can also help you avoid common procedural pitfalls, such as missing crucial deadlines that could result in the dismissal of your case. We know this is a stressful time of your life, and the last thing you should worry about is filing deadlines for legal documents you barely understand. During the appeals process, we aim to work with you to determine your needs and odds of success, keep you informed of the process, and let you focus on the rest of your life.

Contact A St. Petersburg Family Law Attorney Today

Receiving an unfavorable ruling in court might seem like the end of the world, but you have options available to continue the fight for you and your family’s future. At The Bardine Law Firm, we specialize in family law and can guide you every step of the way. Contact us today at (727) 605-7078 or through our website to take the first step toward a brighter future.