San Antonio Criminal Appeals Attorney

San Antonio Criminal Appeals Attorney

A criminal conviction does not have to be the end of the road. One of the most misunderstood aspects of the U.S. criminal justice system is your right to appeal an unjust or unfair ruling or verdict. By appealing a lower court’s decision, you ask the higher court to review it for any errors or misconduct. Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to reverse your conviction.

At Hunter, Lane & Jampala PLLC, we provide top-quantity representation to those seeking justice after an unfair conviction or sentence. Our team consists of skilled trial and appellate attorneys with years of experience in Texas criminal law. If you’re looking to appeal a conviction or the severity of a sentence, we can help. We will evaluate your trial to identify grounds for an appeal and provide you with honest and assertive guidance from beginning to end.

Why Hire Hunter, Lane & Jampala for Your Criminal Appeal?

When it comes to your criminal appeal, selecting the right legal team matters. The exceptional skill of our trial lawyers makes Hunter, Lane & Jampala PLLC a premier firm for appeals. Not only are the attorneys at Hunter, Lane & Jampala licensed to practice and experienced in state appeals including matters in or around San Antonio, all of our attorneys are also licensed to practice in all Texas’s federal district courts, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, and the United States Supreme Court. Here are some of the many benefits of working with us:

  • Proven Trial and Appellate Experience: Our San Antonio criminal appeals attorneys have extensive experience in the courtroom and navigating and succeeding in the complicated appellate process following a conviction.  We know how to effectively preserve error at trial and ensure a thorough and detailed appellate record. This in turn allows us to more efficiently analyze your appeal and ensure that the proper focus is placed on the issues with the highest chance of success. 
  • Detail-Oriented Approach: We pay close attention to every detail of your case. In criminal appeals, scrutinizing trial records and identifying errors or overlooked aspects can be the key to a successful appeal.
  • Expertise in Criminal Law: We are well-versed in state and federal criminal law and stay updated with the latest developments. Our background lets us plan and navigate the appeals process with confidence.
  • Strategic Thinking: Our skill as trial lawyers allows us to think strategically about your appeal. We know how to build a compelling argument and anticipate counterarguments, increasing the chances of a favorable outcome.

The right San Antonio criminal appeals lawyer can make a major difference in the outcome of your case. At Hunter, Lane & Jampala PLLC, our trial lawyers have frequently handled appeals before Texas Appellate Courts, and the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, the United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, making our firm well-equipped to handle your case. Trust us to bring our trial-tested skills and unwavering commitment to your appeal.

Can You Appeal Your Conviction?

It’s important to note that absent a waiver of your right to appeal as a part of a plea deal which you accepted, virtually everyone has the automatic right to appeal a conviction. However, despite an automatic right to an appeal, your chances of success are often highly dependent upon which issues were preserved in the record. Simply stated, although most people have a right to an appeal, they may not have a high likelihood of prevailing in that appeal. Strong reasons for filing an appeal include:

  • Errors in jury instructions that could have impacted the verdict
  • Inappropriate or irrelevant evidence being used during the trial
  • Insufficient evidence to support the guilty verdict
  • Mistakes made by the court in interpreting or applying the law
  • Allegations of unfair or biased conduct by the judge during the trial
  • Subpar defense attorney performance

However, this list is not exhaustive. It is effectively impossible to foretell your chances of obtaining relief in an appeal, which issues are preserved and those of which provide a strong argument for relief, until an attorney has had the chance to review the record in its entirety. A criminal appeals lawyer can examine your case, review the trial record or in cases of Motions for New Trial or writs of habeas corpus, any new evidence you may have, and explain whether they believe you have strong grounds to appeal your conviction.

Do You Have To Use The Same Trial Lawyer For Your Criminal Appeal In Texas?

In Texas, you are not required to use the same trial lawyer for your criminal appeal. In fact, it’s quite common for people to choose a different attorney for their appeal. This is because the skills and expertise needed for an appeal can be different from those required for trial litigation.

Appeals focus more on analyzing the legal aspects of the case, such as looking for errors that might have occurred during the trial, and less on the factual evidence. Being well-versed in appellate law, criminal appeals attorneys are highly experienced in writing persuasive legal briefs and arguing cases before appellate courts.

While your trial lawyer may have extensive knowledge of your case, it’s important to consider whether they have specific experience in handling appeals. If not, it might be beneficial to seek out an attorney who specializes in this area. This decision can significantly impact the effectiveness of your appeal.

When Should You Hire a Criminal Appeals Attorney in San Antonio?

A motion for a new trial should almost always be filed as soon as possible. Doing so not only pushes the appellate timeline out until the trial court rules on the motion or until it is overruled by operation of law after 75 days but it is often the best last chance to supplement the record for your appeal or raise an issue of ineffective assistance of counsel.

Unlike a trial, an appeal focuses on legal errors that might have occurred during the original trial. An experienced appeals lawyer will know how to recognize these mistakes and present an argument that your conviction was unjust. The sooner a lawyer is involved, the more time they have to thoroughly review trial transcripts, evidence, and legal arguments, which is crucial for building a strong appeal.

Apart from the technical and strategic aspects, the emotional and mental preparation for an appeal is also important. The process can be long and stressful, and having a lawyer from the start helps in understanding the process, setting realistic expectations, and preparing mentally and emotionally for the journey ahead. Continuous legal support and guidance from your lawyer can provide a sense of stability and clarity throughout the appeals process.

How to File a Criminal Appeal in Texas

There are several steps involved in filing a criminal appeal in Texas, as well as a specific timeline to follow. Although every case is different, here’s a general guide on how to proceed.

File a Notice of Appeal

First, you must file a Notice of Appeal. This is typically due within 30 days of the sentencing or judgment. Failing to file within this period can result in losing the right to appeal. 

If your trial attorneys are not handling your appeal, your new lawyers will start with a thorough case evaluation. This includes reviewing trial transcripts and clerk’s records. They will also assess whether filing motions for a new trial or arrest of judgment is necessary before moving forward with the formal appeal. The window to file an appeal can be extended if your attorneys filed a motion for new trial.


Preparation of the Appellate Brief

The next major step is preparing the appellate brief. This detailed document presents all relevant facts, record citations, and legal arguments. Your attorneys will aim to clearly demonstrate any errors or injustices that occurred during your trial and are preserved in the appellate record. This brief is usually due within 30 to 90 days after the Notice of Appeal, depending on the case specifics.Following the State’s response the Appellant will then file their own response in return.

Appellate Court Review

Once both parties have submitted their briefs, the appellate court will review the arguments. The court may request oral arguments from the attorneys, which is an opportunity to further emphasize key points of the appeal. Often though the court will make a decision based solely on the written briefs.


The length of time it takes for the appellate court to make a decision varies. It could take several months to over a year, depending on the case and the court’s schedule. 

The results of an appeal can vary based on multiple factors, such as the severity of the offense, the nature of your trial errors, and the legal arguments raised. Remember: the appeals process is about addressing legal errors from the trial, so having a legal team with a keen eye for detail and strong argumentation skills is essential.

What Happens if You Win Your Appeal?

If your appeal is successful, a higher court may:

  • Overturn the original guilty verdict, resulting in an acquittal.
  • Grant a new trial, giving you a fresh opportunity to present your case.
  • Reduce the severity of the original sentence imposed.

If you believe your conviction was unjust or improper, reach out to a San Antonio criminal appeals attorney from our team. We can assess the merits of your case and discuss your options for pursuing an appeal.

Speak to a San Antonio Criminal Appeals Attorney Today

At Hunter, Lane & Jampala PLLC, we provide trusted representation for clients seeking justice through criminal appeals. Our extensive experience before Appellate Courts in Texas, coupled with our unwavering dedication to our clients, sets us apart as a leading criminal defense firm. We assess each case, seeking potential errors and opportunities to present a compelling argument to the higher court.

If you believe your conviction was unjust or you have valid grounds for an appeal, don’t delay—contact Hunter, Lane & Jampala PLLC today. Our skilled team will guide you with compassion, expertise, and tenacity throughout the appeals process, fighting passionately for your rights. To learn more, call (210) 202-1076 or use our contact form to schedule a consultation today.

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