Have you been convicted of a crime? Has sentencing already taken place? Rather than settling for an outcome you’re unhappy with, consider working with Towson, MD criminal appeals attorney Albers & Associates. We offer free consultations and can help you determine whether or not it’s in your best interest to appeal. If it’s the right decision for you, we’ll be there every step of the way.
The Court System
The Maryland Criminal Appeals system can be rather complex, so it’s important to first understand the responsibilities of each of the courts in the state:
District Court: Every county in Maryland has a district court that handles a multitude of minor crimes and legal violations like landlord-tenant disputes, traffic tickets, and petitions for peace orders.
Circuit Court: On the next level we have the circuit court. They handle more serious crimes and civil cases. When appealing cases that were originally tried in the district court, it is the circuit court that will hear the appeal.
Court of Appeals: The supreme court in Maryland, the court of appeals, is comprised of a chief judge and six associate judges and reviews both minor and major cases.
Court of Special Appeals: The court that has the power to overturn rulings, uphold decisions, or declare a mistrial of cases heard at lower court levels.
Appealing Your Criminal Case
When you are sentenced, after your trial or guilty plea, you have a period of 30 days to appeal your case. Unfortunately, not every case in Towson, Maryland is eligible for appeal. However, if your case was heard in the District Court, you do have the right to an automatic de novo appeal, or a fresh trial.
This trial will be held in the Circuit Court, and they will weigh the facts of your case in order to allow you a potentially different outcome or sentence. Appealing your case a second time will move the hearing(s) to the Court of Appeals or Special Court of Appeals. If you want to appeal your case beyond Maryland’s Circuit Court, a leave of appeal must be requested and granted by the Court of Appeals. It is common for these sorts of requests to be denied unless there are special circumstances surrounding your case.
Need Help with Your Criminal Appeal?
When appealing your criminal case, it’s important to have an experienced attorney on your side. At Albers & Associates, we’re well versed in the Maryland Criminal Appeals process and can give you the professional advice you need to be successful in appealing your case. Contact us today for your free consultation.