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Although all cases are initially tried at the trial court level, the losing party may appeal the case to higher courts known as appellate courts. One of the main differences between a trial and appellate review is that an appeals court does not gather new evidence. The only facts considered are those that were presented at trial and the appellate court decides whether an error was committed during the trial that would be grounds to reverse the trial court’s decision.

What does appellate review entail? The court examines the trial court record as well as written arguments submitted by the parties. There is no jury – the appeals court will interpret the law and apply it to the facts in the record.

Just as trial lawyers focus on trial law, appellate lawyers focus on appellate law. Appellate lawyers are knowledgeable in the appeals process and skilled in researching and writing effective appellate briefs and making proper arguments to the appellate court. Whereas trial lawyers are effective in weaving facts of the case together into a persuasive story to present to a trial judge and jury, an appellate lawyer is effective at dealing with the facts and the law and concisely explaining why the appellate court judges should affirm or reverse the trial court’s decision, based on legal precedent.

Whether your case was handled by us or by another lawyer at the trial level, we can help you to appeal a disappointing lower court result or to preserve your victory when the other side files an appeal.

Our appellate experience combined with an objective review of the record and a fresh approach to the legal issues helps position our clients for the best outcome on appeal.  In appeals in which we are not “first chair” counsel, we consult with lawyers from other firms regarding appellate strategy and assist in preparation for oral argument.

Our office has experience in appellate work, which includes:

  • Jury verdict appeals
  • Summary judgment appeals
  • State district court appeals
  • Federal district court appeals
  • Appellate brief writing
  • Oral arguments
  • Appeals from cases handled by other attorneys

To schedule a consultation with one of our experienced attorneys, please call Johnson & Sundeen, LTD, in Watford City, North Dakota today at 701-444-2211 or email us at JSLO@dakotalawdogs.com.

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Partner: Ross Sundeen

In addition to practicing law with Johnson & Sundeen, Ross is the Assistant Dunn County States Attorney.

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Partner: Ariston Johnson

Ariston joined JSLO in 2011 and has an excellent track record arguing appellate cases before the North Dakota Supreme Court.

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Partner: Aaron Weber

Aaron also worked as a wildland firefighter for four summers while in college. He received various certifications and was on one of the largest fires in New Mexico state history, the Las Conchas Fire.

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