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Considering a Divorce Appeal? – CT

Considering a Connecticut Divorce Appeal?

Lawyers represent clients seeking to reverse errors in divorce cases

If the judge’s decision in your divorce was less than satisfactory, you might still have the opportunity to secure a more favorable result. At Needle | Cuda in Westport, we advise clients across the state regarding Connecticut divorce appeals procedure so that they can make informed choices about whether to challenge orders relating to parenting and financial terms. We have achieved strong results for parties in various family law appellate matters and can give you an accurate rundown as to what lies ahead if you intend to reverse an unfair outcome.

Reasons to consider appealing a divorce decision

If you believe that the order for your divorce in Connecticut reflects a legal or factual error, you might choose to have another court review whether the judge’s decision had the proper support. Not every adverse outcome is worthy of an appeal, so it’s important to get feedback from a knowledgeable attorney before you decide on a course of action. In certain situations, a Motion to Reargue your position in front of the same judge might be your first step if it seems the judge overlooked a controlling legal principle when deciding your case.

Grounds for appeal in Connecticut

Winning an appeal requires more than a showing that you are right on the merits. Many legal decisions that a judge makes during trial, such as the inclusion or denial of certain evidence, can only be reversed if an “abuse of discretion” is shown. This might occur when the judge interprets statutory or precedential law incorrectly and must be more than a judgment call that you disagree with. Factual determinations that are clearly erroneous can be overturned, so the fact that the appellate panel might interpret circumstances differently than the trial judge might not lead to the result you seek.

Is an appeal the right decision for you?

Before you go forward with an appeal, you must have a thorough understanding of the potential benefits and drawbacks. You can rely on us for honest insight regarding the time and cost of appealing a divorce order, as well as the likelihood of a successful outcome. Not every adverse decision is subject to appellate review and in some cases, even if an error is found, it might not have a material effect on your divorce terms.

How the appeals process works in divorce cases

Appeals can take a year or more to move through the legal system, but you will not have any chance to do so unless you act within 20 days after the order is issued or the Motion for Reargument is resolved. Our firm quickly reviews case transcripts and identifies the most likely grounds for reversal. From there, we file a Notice of Appeal with the Appellate Division and guide you through each step of the appeals process, which can include:

  • Submission of trial transcripts and exhibits to the Appellate Division
  • Mediation before a neutral third party
  • Research to find legal support for the appeal
  • Drafting of briefs outlining the relevant facts and law pursuant to the schedule set forth by the court
  • Oral arguments before a three-judge appellate panel
  • Possible appeal to the Connecticut Supreme Court if appropriate relief is not granted

At every stage of your appeal, our attorneys keep you informed of the relevant law and any significant case developments.

Common issues that lead to divorce appeals

When you first hire a law firm to represent you in a divorce, it is best to find one such as ours that has extensive experience in both trials and family law appeals. During the case, we identify any potentially reversible errors on the judge’s part and can preserve your right to appeal by lodging an appropriate objection. In many ways, strong appellate work starts during the trial and keeping the same lawyer will allow you to avoid delays that could cause you to miss the strict filing deadline. Whether the particular problem relates to an improper ruling on evidence, the use of the wrong legal standard or a factual error, we offer comprehensive counsel aimed at achieving the terms you seek on property division, alimony, child custody and spousal support.

Speak with an experienced Connecticut lawyer regarding a divorce appeal

Needle | Cuda represents Connecticut residents in appeals from divorce decisions. If you believe the outcome of your divorce trial was reached due to a legal error, please call 203-557-9500 or contact us online. Our office is in Westport.


Frequently Asked Questions and Answers about Connecticut Divorce Appeals?

Any party involved in the divorce proceedings who is dissatisfied with the final judgment or certain orders made by the court may file for an appeal. However, it's important to consult with an experienced appellate lawyer to determine if an appeal is appropriate and viable in your situation.

In Connecticut, an appeal must be filed within 20 days from the date the judgment or order was rendered. Because timelines can be strict and procedural requirements complex, seeking timely legal advice is crucial.

Grounds for a divorce appeal typically involve legal errors, such as misapplication of the law, procedural mistakes, or substantial evidence overlooked by the court that could have influenced the decision. Dissatisfaction with the court's decision, without a legal basis, is not enough for a successful appeal.

The process begins by filing a notice of appeal with the Connecticut Appellate Court. Subsequent steps include preparing and submitting a brief outlining the legal arguments for the appeal, possibly presenting oral arguments, and awaiting the appellate court's decision. It's a complex process that requires adherence to specific procedural rules.

Typically, no new evidence can be introduced during the appeal process. Appeals focus on reviewing the trial court's application of law and whether the evidence at trial was sufficient to support the decision. Any new evidence would generally not be considered at this stage.

The duration of the divorce appeal process can vary greatly depending on the complexity of the case and the court's workload. It can take several months to over a year from the filing of the appeal to the final decision.

The appellate court may affirm the lower court's decision, reverse it, or remand the case back to the lower court for further proceedings consistent with the appellate court's findings. In some cases, the court may also modify the original order.

The cost of appealing a divorce case can vary widely based on the complexity of the appeal, the need for legal representation, and the length of the appellate process. It includes court fees, attorney fees, and potentially the cost of transcript preparation.

Given the complexity of appellate law and the strict procedural requirements, it is highly recommended to hire an attorney experienced in divorce appeals in Connecticut. An attorney can provide valuable guidance and representation throughout the process.  It can also be advantageous to align with a firm that handles both trial court and appellate court for Connecticut divorce.

Feel free to adjust these FAQs to fit the specific services and expertise offered by Needle | Cuda, and ensure that the information is consistent with the latest Connecticut laws and court procedures.

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