Appealing a decision or order from the New York Supreme or Family Court is a complicated process. To begin with, you should have sufficient grounds for appealing: being dissatisfied with the outcome of your case is not enough. The following circumstances must also apply:

  • You or your attorney must have objected to the issue during the trial: doing so informs the judge that you disagree with something and makes your disagreement part of the court records.
  • The matter must usually be decided and a final order issued.
  • There must be evidence that the judge abused their discretion or the outcome was incorrect as a matter of law.

If your situation meets these criteria, then you can make an appeal to the Appellate Division, which has jurisdiction over the lower courts such as the Supreme and Family Courts. Some decisions that you can appeal include:

  • Child support
  • Child custody
  • Divorce matters, such as spousal maintenance and division of assets

An appeal can have one of four potential results:

  • Affirm: The original decision is confirmed to be correct and remains in effect.
  • Reversal: The Appellate Court concludes that the lower court decision was erroneous and vacates it entirely.
  • Modification: Part of the initial decision is changed, although the remainder stays the same.
  • Remand: Your case is returned to the lower court to be heard once again.

In New York, a notice of appeal must be filed within 30 days. If the court sent the order to you by mail, then you must file the Notice of Appeal within 35 days from the mailing date.  If you fail to do so before the applicable deadline passes, then the opportunity is lost.

If you recently appeared in Family or Superior Court on a family law or divorce matter and felt that the judge was unfair or a mistake was made, then contact a New York family law attorney who can help you prepare an appeal and file it with the Appellate Division. Appealing is not a simple matter: after filing, a full record of the case is needed, including the transcripts, so you can perfect the appeal (prepare a full record of the case including the brief). Then the brief must be filed with the Appellate Division and served on the respondent.

Your New York family law appeals attorney will present your case to the Appellate Division and argue on your behalf, explaining to the court what errors were made that justify the appeal. They will ensure that the correct information appears in your written brief and present the information in an effective manner, citing the proper legal authority to demonstrate that there is legal precedence for your position. Working with an attorney will give your appeal the foundation required for serious consideration by the Appellate Division.6000