Ocala Criminal Defense Attorneys Choose the Powerful Defense of Dunham & Ingram

I'll Just Appeal

You go to court, accept a plea offer from the State Attorney, and resolve your case. Maybe you’re not crazy about the plea deal, but you’re worried about facing jail or even prison. And in the back of your mind, you think “no worries! I can always appeal.” Eh, it isn’t really that simple.

When you sign a plea agreement it more than likely says somewhere in the document that you’re giving up the right to appeal. That means you can still file the appellate paperwork, but that appeals court will see that you signed a plea agreement saying you won’t appeal. Plus, when you fill out that appellate paperwork you have to tell them what decision or action of the court you’re appealing. It’s difficult to convince an appeals court that the plea agreement to which you agreed was an error on the part of the court.

In 2010 Florida appellate courts granted 12% of the appeals that came before them. That means they reversed a decision of a lower court 12% of the time. Most of these appeals will be related to decisions made at trial – not plea agreements. These reversals don’t grant you freedom – they don’t make your case go away. Essentially you get a do-over. A new trial or new sentencing.

When you sign a plea agreement you need to take it very seriously. It’s a legally binding contract that affects the rest of your life. Make sure that you have an attorney like those at Dunham and Ingram who can explain the ins and outs of your plea agreement and stand by your side in court when you accept it.