Matthew Pillado PLLC

Criminal & Civil Appeals.

  • Sometimes a criminal case or a civil case produces results we do not want. Depending on what happened in the criminal or civil case, an appeal may be appropriate. This is done after the lower court or trial court has ruled or had a trial. The Courts of Appeals can look to see if the law was applied correctly or if the trial court did something in error. But the Court of Appeals does not retry cases; it only looks to issues of law.
  • In both criminal appeals and civil appeals, there are important deadlines that if missed could jeopardize the entire appeals process. Appeal” is a broad term that can mean many things. In the legal world, appeals are divided into criminal appeals and civil appeals.
  • Keep in mind these are totally different areas of law.

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Criminal Appeals

For criminal appeals in Texas, every case will have what is called the “Trial Court’s Certification of Defendant’s Right Of Appeal.” Under this section, there will be several options. The option that applies usually has a checkmark next to it, indicating the defendant’s right to appeal. Here are the options:


  • “is not a plea-bargain case, and the defendant has the right to appeal.”
  • “is a plea-bargain case, but matters were raised by written motion filed and ruled on before trial and not withdrawn or waived, and the defendant has the right of appeal.”
  • “is a plea-bargain case, but the trial court has given permission to appeal, and the defendant has the right to appeal.”
  • “is a plea-bargain case, and the defendant has NO right of appeal.”
  • “The defendant has waived the right of appeal.”
  • The most common option is “a plea-bargain case, and the defendant has NO right of appeal.”
  • The most common appeals are direct appeals and writs. A writ is typically used when there is no possibility of direct appeal.

Options for Criminal Appeals.

Depending on the specific facts of the case, the defendant can usually seek relief through motions, direct appeal or writ. Which one is applicable to you depends on what occurred in the criminal case.

Keep in mind that defendants are typically on a strict timeline to file certain motions to preserve their appeals.

Federal Criminal Appeals.

Typically, if a person is going through state court, he or she must exhaust all available appeal options at the state level before moving to the federal appeals process.

Contact us for experienced representation in criminal appeals. Call Matthew Pillado PLLC at 800-672-3911 to learn more or complete our online contact form.

Civil Appeals.

  • After a civil trial is completed, a motion for new trial is filed with the court. At that point, the trial court has 120 days to send the records to the Court of Appeals.
  • Once records are received, the party appealing has 30 days to write a brief and the opposing party then has 30 days to respond.
  • Keep in mind that either side can request additional time to prepare a brief so that could delay the process.
  • Oral arguments can then be requested.
  • After that, then the Court of Appeals can rule. The entire process takes nine to 15 months on average.
  • Just like in criminal appeals, there are strict deadlines that must be followed so as not to jeopardize the appeal.
  • Contact our lawyers if you are considering an appeal in a civil or criminal case.

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