There are few times in life when your civil rights are more important than when you find yourself facing criminal allegations. Many of the most crucial protections in the Bill of Rights specifically focus on the interactions people have with law enforcement or other individuals operating on behalf of the government.
For example, the Fourth Amendment protects you from unlawful searches and seizures. The Fifth Amendment gives you the right against incriminating yourself in court. The Sixth Amendment is arguably just as important, even if some people don’t know as much about it.
It gives you the right to a speedy trial, the right to have your case heard by a jury of your peers, the right to present your own witnesses and the right to adequate legal representation. Your right to adequate legal guidance and advocacy is so crucial that the government has to provide you with a lawyer if you can’t afford one. Unfortunately, some people partner with the wrong defense attorney and end up convicted as a result.
When do an attorney’s actions open up an avenue for appeal?
Typically, an individual asking for an appeal needs to have grounds for their claim. Conflicts of interest, misinterpretation of the law or similar procedural issues can give someone grounds for an appeal after their conviction with a criminal offense.
Inadequate representation can also lead to a successful appeal. There are many different ways in which a lawyer could affect the fairness and outcome of a client’s criminal case. For example, they might miss a crucial court date, forget to file paperwork, show up to court under the influence of alcohol or even have no experience with the particular area of criminal defense.
When a lawyer commits acts of gross negligence, gives you inaccurate information about the law or simply represents you poorly in court to a point where it directly impacts the outcome, you may have grounds for an appeal.
Good support is incredibly important for a criminal appeal
Having an attorney who understands the situation and everything at risk is important for those facing life-altering criminal charges. If your lawyer not only disappointed you but failed in their duty to you, you will probably need help from someone else with legal knowledge to pursue an appeal and seek justice. Rather than letting one bad experience stop you from advocating for yourself, you can use it as motivation to push forward and demand justice.