Over the past 30 years, our Pierce County appellate attorneys have developed a strong reputation and an excellent track record in appellate practice and procedure. We handle civil appeals representing clients in both the state Court of Appeals and Supreme Court. Our clients include individuals, families, businesses, estates, fiduciaries, and non-profits.
Contact Us Today
Please contact our office to schedule an appointment with our appellate counsel, and partners in the firm, Douglas N. Kiger or Nicole M. Bolan.
Call (253) 470-2356 to get started on your case.
We choose our cases carefully. We limit our cases to those we believe will have merit on appeal.
We have a deep understanding of the law. Because we also handle litigation, we are able to see cases from various angles.
Our appellate lawyers in Pierce County are trained and skilled in legal writing and oral advocacy. Many appeals turn on the quality of the legal writing in the briefs submitted to the court. It has been said that cases are often decided on the briefs — you can’t win a case on oral argument alone. However, you can lose a case on the quality of the oral argument. Our lawyers excel at both.
We take pride in the firm’s collaborative approach. We discuss cases to benefit from the knowledge and experience of all lawyers in the firm. You have an entire appellate law firm working for you.
Nicole has an incredible capacity to understand the "human" aspects and nuances of divorce, especially when kids are involved.- Ursula
Can the court dismiss my appeal?
Yes, there are a few different ways your appeal could be dismissed by the court prior to a final ruling in the case.
First, the court could dismiss your appeal at your request. You are always free to ask the court to dismiss your case and accept the ruling of the trial court. You can also request the court dismiss your appeal on the basis that you have settled your dispute with the other party.
However, if your case is pending in the state Supreme Court, asking to dismiss your appeal for these reasons may be more difficult. The state Supreme Court often accepts cases because they involve important legal issues in this state, which may have important precedential value. As a result, the Supreme Court may decline to dismiss a case if it feels a ruling on the issue if important.
The court can also dismiss your appeal involuntarily. If you fail to raise sufficient reasons to justify your appeal, the other side may file a motion called a “motion on the merits.” This is the other side’s request to the court that your appeal be dismissed summarily because there is no chance that your requests on appeal will be granted.
Please don’t hesitate to contact our offices with any questions you may have about an appeal. Our experienced attorneys are here to help you!
Who can attend an oral argument?
With only a few exceptions, oral arguments are open to the public and anyone is permitted to attend. There are three appellate courts and a supreme court in Washington. The three appellate courts are located in Seattle, Tacoma, and Spokane. The state Supreme Court is located in Olympia. From time to time, members of the appellate courts hear oral argument at other locations around the state to make it easier for visitors to watch oral argument in a city or town near where they live.
The appellate court locations and court calendars can be found at http://www.courts.wa.gov/appellate_trial_courts/. Calendars showing oral argument dates and times are also available through this website.
Are there costs involved with filing an appeal?
Yes, there are costs involved in filing an appeal, above and beyond what an attorney would charge. First, there is a filing fee for filing the appeal. The cost for filing an appeal in the State of Washington at this time is $250. Also, once the appeal is filed, it is the responsibility of the party filing the appeal to arrange for the “record” on review to be transmitted to the appeals court. This includes transcripts of the testimony in the trial court. The court reporter charges a fee for this transcription. The record also includes ordering copies of court filings, which are billed on a per page basis by the court clerk’s office.
Who can file an appeal?
Any party to a lawsuit who received an unfavorable ruling from a court can file an appeal. Someone who is not a party to the suit does not have authority to file an appeal. Also, as discussed in an earlier post (January 2, 2013) there generally must be a final order entered before an appeal can be filed.
Although any aggrieved party is entitled to file an appeal, it may not always be advisable to do so. Statistically speaking, most cases that are appealed are not reversed; the trial court decision is upheld. This is because on appeal, the court is looking for errors made by the lower court. On issues of fact – what the trial court determined the facts of the case were – the trial court is given deference. Unless it can be shown that there was no substantial evidence to support the trial court’s factual determinations, the trial court’s rulings on issues of fact will be upheld.