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Process of Appealing a Divorce judgement.

Houston, TX |

Our final divorce trial was on 21st March 2014. The judge gave his verdict the same day. Today is 26th April 2014. The final divorce decree has not yet been signed since our attorneys are going back and forth over the wordings. In the judgement, the judge gave me a generous amount in child support and property. Something that my ex was not expecting. Now he is threatening to appeal the case. My questions are

1. Its been more than 30 days since the trail can he still file the appeal?

2. If he files the appeal, do I have to hire another appellant attorney to fight his appeal in the appeals court?

3. Typically how long does it take for the appeals court to reach a decision?

4. If the case goes back to the trail, will it be open for ALL the decisions that judge gave in the decree?

Thanks

Attorney Answers 4

Posted

The case can be appealed 30 days after the date the final order/judgment is signed by the Judge. Whether you need to hire another attorney depends on whether your attorney can handle appeals. It can take the court of appeals 6 months, a year or longer. If the court of appeals is remanded for trial it will be on the portions of the judgment reversed by the court of appeals only.

This does not establish an attorney/client relationship. Dallas, Denton, Collin and Tarrant County, Texas practice area. Principal office located in Lake Dallas, Texas.

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3 comments

Dorothea Elaine Laster

Dorothea Elaine Laster

Posted

If there is a new trial it will be over the issues that the court of appeals indicates needs to be retried--if any.

Asker

Posted

Thanks Dorothea. It has been more than 30 days since the final trial. Does this mean the window has passed or does the clock starts ticking after the final decree has been signed by both parties??. My lawyer does not handel appeals. I am almost broke and cannot afford to fight with him in the appeals court. Can I ask him to pay for the attorney fees if he goes for the appeal?

Dorothea Elaine Laster

Dorothea Elaine Laster

Posted

Again the 30 days run from the time the judgment is signed by the Judge. He can extend his deadline for filing an appeal by filing a motion for new trial with the trial court. The fees question is a good one. You may have needed to request attorney’s fees on appeal in your divorce pleadings and at trial and be awarded them (on a contingent basis) in your decree. You can still request them in your appellate brief, if any, but I wouldn't hold my breath unless his appeal is deemed to be frivolous. The good news is that it will be expensive for him to appeal and he probably won't. If he does appeal, it is unlikely that he will be successful. If he does appeal, many of us on AVVO handle Family Law Appeals. Defending a judgment is easier and less expensive than trying to get one overturned.

Posted

You have a lawyer. That is the appropriate person to answer your questions.

This answer DOES NOT establish an attorney-client relationship. This answer is based on the limited information provided and is not intended to be conclusive advice. There are likely other factors that might influence or change the advice after a more lengthy consultation.

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Posted

In this case, the 30 day period to appeal begins once the judge signs the final decree. Talk to your lawyer about these questions. That's what you're paying them for. If you want to appeal now is the time to be finding a lawyer to help you.

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Posted

You have a lawyer. Ask those questions of your lawyer.
Be careful about "agreeing" to the decree or about taking any benefit of the court's order. If you do , you may ruin any chance of an appeal.
Your attorney may instruct you to hire an appellate attorney. If you decide to appeal, you must do so IMMEDIATELY.
There are VERY shout timeframes in which to file a motion for new trial and to request finding of fact and conclusions of law.

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