Tips for Navigating The Appellate and Post-Conviction Process in Georgia
Motion for New TrialAfter conviction, the next stage in challenging your charges is through a Motion for New Trial. First a written Motion is filed and then a hearing is held before the same Judge that handled your trial. That judge decides whether or not to give you a new trial. If the Judge grants a new trial, then your case goes before another jury. If the Judge denies you a new trial, your case goes to either the Georgia Court of Appeals or the Georgia Supreme Court for review.
Appealing to the Georgia Supreme Court or Georgia Court of AppealsIf your trial judge does not give you a new trial then you can appeal that decision to either the Georgia Supreme Court (for murder cases) or the Georgia Court of Appeals (for all other criminal offenses).
Habeas Corpus (Post-conviction remedies)If the Court of Appeals or the Georgia Supreme Court does not grant you a new trial then you can file a Habeas Corpus Petition in the county where you are being incarcerated or are under sentence (if sentence was probation the county where you are located and attend probation). You can have a hearing on this Habeas Corpus Petition before a Judge in the county where you file the petition. This Judge can decide to give you a new trial or allow you to withdraw your plea if you pled guilty.
There are some serious time limits in filing a habeas corpus proceeding so I would recommend speaking with an attorney who handles these specific types of cases as soon as possible to insure you do not miss any filing deadlines.
Appealing Your Habeas Corpus DecisionIf the Judge in the Habeas Corpus Petition does not grant you a new trial or allow you to withdraw your guilty plea, you can appeal that decision to the Georgia Supreme Court. The Supreme Court does not have to consider your case but they can review it if they so choose. They can grant you a new trial or allow you to withdraw your plea.