By the time you have reached a point in your lawsuit where the term “appeal” becomes relevant to you, you probably already feel like you have a sense of how the legal system works. Appeals are quite a bit different because, for the most part, they serve a different function in the system.
At the trial court level, where your case is probably pending, the court considers evidence to determine the facts and then applies the law to those facts to reach a decision. Depending upon where in the process of a lawsuit you are, there might be a jury involved or it may be just a judge. The evidence that is put before the Court might include things like live testimony or sworn written statements. The Court evaluates all of the evidence submitted to decide what is most believable and then determines how the law says that a question with those facts must be answered. The Court formally answers the question by issuing an Order. (more…)