Premise liability cases in California follow the same structure as most other personal injury claims. One of the key aspects of the claims process is proving negligence on behalf of the property owner. The injured party must be able to show that the property owner did not maintain a reasonable level of care for the property and that lack of care is what led to the injury.
Unfortunately, the legal system does not always work flawlessly. There may be instances where the court determines no negligence was present despite supporting evidence or testimonials. They reach these decisions based on insufficient evidence or an incorrect interpretation of the law. That is when an Irvine premises liability appellate lawyer can assist.
Gusdorff Law provides appellate services to plaintiffs who did not receive a favorable ruling. The appeals process in California can be very demanding and overturning a verdict requires the legal assistance of a lawyer who specializes in personal injury appeals. The team at Gusdorff Law has been helping clients challenge unfair rulings for 15 years. Call our office today at 818-877-4515 to discuss your next steps.
Can I File an Appeal for My Premises Liability Verdict?
Yes. Both parties in a legal case have the right to appeal the decision for various reasons. If you are the plaintiff in the case and the defendant files an appeal, then you will not receive any payment from the defendant until the appeals process is completed. Appeals from defendants are not as common in small cases because it is often more affordable for the insurance company to settle the claim than to go forward with one or more rounds of appeals.
The majority of premises liability cases in California are argued in the Superior Courts. Also known as trial courts, these courts handle a variety of criminal and civil cases as well as appeals for misdemeanors and small claims cases. However, appeals for premises liability claims are handled in the Courts of Appeals. In some rare cases, the decision from the Court of Appeal can be challenged through the California Supreme Court.
It’s important to understand that a settlement cannot be appealed. A settlement represents an agreement between both parties that does not include input from the court system. Settlements are handled entirely out of court and thus cannot be reviewed or appealed by the Court of Appeal.
What Are Some of the Reasons That I Can File an Appeal?
Simply having the right to appeal a verdict is not necessarily an adequate reason for filing an appeal. The Court of Appeal does not review the evidence in the same way as the Superior Courts. They will instead review the records from the case to determine if the verdict was appropriate or if the case should be returned to the lower courts and tried again.
There are five key reasons that may allow you to appeal a verdict:
- Misconduct on behalf of the jury
- An improper interpretation or application of the law
- Improper procedures in the Superior Court
- Receiving a verdict that is not sufficiently supported by the evidence
- A compensation amount that is either much lower or much higher than needed
Our firm can help determine if any of these criteria are met and express that information to the Court of Appeal. Some of these criteria require additional information to justify an appeal. Misconduct, improper law interpretation, and improper procedures are not necessarily enough to win an appeal on their own.
We must show that the errors had a direct impact on the outcome of the case. Improper procedures in a courtroom that ultimately had no bearing on the verdict will not provide sufficient grounds for appeal.
What Should I Expect During the Appeal Process?
The appeals process often requires minimal input from the plaintiff or defendant appealing the ruling. The Court of Appeals is not retrying the case nor do they accept new evidence or witness testimonials. The appeal is reviewed by a small committee and there are no jury members present. Most of the work is handled by lawyers, which is why it is crucial to work with the best appellate lawyer in Irvine, CA.
The party requesting the appeal is referred to as the petitioner and the opposing side is the respondent. Lawyers on both sides of the case start by submitting briefs to the committee. For the petitioner, the brief is a written argument that outlines the grounds for the appeal and provides supporting information. The Court of Appeal will review the briefs before the petitioner and the respondent provide oral arguments in court.
The appeals process in California can be very lengthy. The majority of the time is spent waiting before the Court of Appeal can process the information and hear oral arguments. The average appeal can last anywhere from 14 to 16 months. Some cases have closed in less than a year but this is fairly rare. You will have only 60 days from the time the clerk mails your premises liability judgment to file for an appeal.
Why Should I Hire Gusdorff Law to File My Appeal?
Every appeals claim is unique and lawyers who take a “cookie-cutter” approach to their client’s needs are always at a disadvantage. We work closely with every client to create a custom-tailored legal solution that builds credibility and challenge perceptions.
If you were awarded substantial compensation from a major insurance company, then it’s highly likely they will try to appeal the ruling even if they don’t have adequate reasoning. Legal tactics like these make it difficult and time-consuming for clients to receive what they are owed. By working with the legal team at Gusdorff Law you can ensure that these tactics are dismissed appropriately and that you receive the compensation you deserve.
Contact an Expert Irvine Premises Liability Appellate Lawyer Today!
The California appeals process is often slow and expensive. In some cases, it is used by large companies in hopes of avoiding payment. In other cases, it is a valuable tool for plaintiffs that can be used to overturn a faulty ruling. Gusdorff Law has 15 years of experience working in the appellate courts and understands what it takes to win and defend against appeals. If you believe you have reason to appeal a decision in a premises liability case, then call us today at 818-877-4515 for a consultation.