It’s one thing to stand before a jury and present a case. Trials take days or weeks. Massive piles of evidence are deployed. Opening and closing statements can last for hours. Everything about a trial in civil court is designed to ensure that every scrap of information gets presented, all parties get their say, and every possible argument gets made and resolved. However, once a judgment has been handed down and a winner and loser declared, everything changes.
Once your appeal is filed, you must then face the fact that appellate cases are not at all like the civil trial you’ve already been through. Typically, no new evidence can be presented during the appeal unless certain circumstances exist, and the judges who will review your case will not be the same trial judge who has spent weeks or months presiding over your case. This is both a benefit and a problem; it is certainly a benefit because you now have fresh sets of eyes looking at your case, who can look over it and check for any problems which may have arisen during the trial. However, this is also a problem because now you need to tell your whole story all over again, and convince these new judges that you are in the right. Worse, your arguments must be presented in a much more constrained format than they were at trial: each side has the opportunity to submit written briefs to the court, and oftentimes will also present their case through a brief oral argument. As a result, in appeals, it is imperative that your side of the case be communicated succinctly and persuasively.
While the procedural elements of the case are different in administrative appeals, the basic theory is still the same. Entities like the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control’s Appeals Board review cases based on the record compiled by Administrative Law Judges during the original case, and receive limited argumentation in the forms of written briefs and short verbal argumentation. Additionally, administrative appeals cases can themselves often be appealed to civil courts.
The attorneys at Solomon, Saltsman, & Jamieson have been working on civil appeals for decades and will ensure that your case is presented in just such a succinct and persuasive manner. The firm is no stranger to high-stakes litigation and has won landmark cases before the California Supreme Court striking down unfair and unconstitutional administrative practices by the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control. Let Solomon, Saltsman, & Jamieson help you today!