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Should I flat out appeal my conviction or appeal based on the "harsh and excessive" sentence? State-appointed or private counsel

Schenectady, NY |

I pled guilty to "offering a false instrument for filing." I had brought a receipt to the DMV for a fine I had paid but saw it had two different dates on it. I asked the DMV to verify it to see which date accurate so it would correctly be reflected on my records. (I had a suspended license charge that I was disputing, claiming that my license WAS valid at the time I was driving). The DMV did so and 30 days later agreed that my fine had been paid timely. The D.A. was furious and insisted that the receipt I'd brought in was "fake". My lawyer told me that if I didn't plead guilty to "offering a false instrument" then I could face up to 14 years if I lost at trial. Naive, I pled guilty and was sentenced to 1-3 years. I have since served my time and filed a motion to appeal. Thoughts?

Attorney Answers 4


  1. Best answer

    Excessive appeal viability is diluted by a plea and if you weren't sentenced to the maximum, however you should consult an experienced appeals attorney to pursue the matter.

    If you found this "helpful" or "best answer," please click it with my appreciation. My response is for educational purposes and does not constitute legal advice nor creates an attorney client relationship which requires all the details and a personal conference.


  2. Did you serve a Notice of Appeal within 30 days of your conviction? If you served your time what are you appealing about? Are you on Post Release Supervision? If you agreed to this sentence I see little to zero chance on winning an appeal.

    I am a former federal and State prosecutor and have been doing criminal defense work for over 16 years. I was named to the Super Lawyers list as one of the top attorneys in New York for 2012. No more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by Super Lawyers. Martindale-Hubbell has given me its highest rating - AV Preeminent - in the areas of Criminal Law, Personal Injury, and Litigation. According to Martindale-Hubbell”AV Preeminent is a significant rating accomplishment - a testament to the fact that a lawyer's peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence." Fewer than 8% of attorneys achieve an AV Preeminent rating. I also have the highest ranking – “superb” – on Avvo. Feel free to check out my web site and contact me. The above answer, and any follow up comments or emails is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.


  3. It doesn' seem likely that you could appeal at this time. The time for appeal is right after the sentencing. Also you pled guilty so I'm not sure what your grounds for appeal would be. I'm sorry to say that I doubt that you can do anything now about it.

    If this answer was helpful please click that block. Answers in the forum are only general and it is always best to contact a criminal defense lawyer to discuss your case. We handle NY, NJ and all Federal Court cases. Bukh Law Firm P.C., 14 Wall Street, New York NY 10005, (212) 729-1632. www.nyccriminallawyer.com


  4. Time is noton your side if you want to file an appeal. As stated above, if you agreed to the terms of the plea agreement, your chances of winning an appeal are significantly reduced.

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