An offender can appeal a criminal conviction if errors occurred that may have affected the results of the trial. An appeal does not grant the person a new trial or allow the presentation of new evidence and witnesses. The court simply seeks to determine whether the error impacted the trial and make adjustments accordingly.
Explore the process of filing a criminal appeal through the Superior Court of California.
Submit Notice of Appeal
The offender or his or her attorney must file an official Notice of Appeal with the court within 60 days of a felony sentence, final conviction, probation order, or commitment for substance use or mental health reasons. California requires appeal within 30 days for a misdemeanor offense.
This document must include a written certificate of probable cause that details the grounds under the person’s attorney believes his or her trial was illegal. An offender can appeal a criminal conviction in California on legal, jurisdictional or constitutional grounds.
Take part in the hearing
Once you successfully submit your request for an appeal, the Superior Court must prepare a reporter’s transcript. This official document includes all statements made during your trial as documented by the court reporter. The court must also prepare a clerk’s transcript, which comprises all documents and exhibits on file related to your trial. After receiving these documents, your attorney can request the addition of missing items.
At the appellate hearing, your attorney will present the case for an appeal. If the court denies your appeal request, you have 15 days to request another hearing. The court will require the prosecuting agency to submit an answer to its request within eight days to inform the approval of a second hearing.