Do I Need an Attorney to File an Appeal?

A party is not required to have an attorney in order to file a criminal or civil appeal in the state of Wisconsin. A party without counsel who independently files his or her appeal is known as a pro se litigant.

If you choose to file an appeal pro se, you will want to consult the Guide to Appellate Procedure for the Self-Represented, published by the Clerk of the Wisconsin Supreme Court and Court of Appeals. This guide is based on the Wisconsin Rules of Appellate Procedure, and offers general information to assist pro se appellants in gaining an understanding of the complex appellate process.

Bear in mind that courts do not extend special treatment to pro se appellants. Pro se appellants must comply with all administrative requirements and meet all deadlines as outlined in the Wisconsin Rules of Appellate Procedure. Some of these deadlines are jurisdictional in nature, meaning that the courts do not have the power to extend them even if they want to. So it is imperative that you know all of the deadlines involved in Wisconsin Appeals and either follow them strictly or know which ones can be extended and timely ask for reasonable extensions.

While it is not unheard of for a pro se litigant to successfully appeal his or her case, it is very rare. The process of filing an appeal is difficult and time consuming, and therefore best handled by an experienced appeals attorney.

To discuss the possibility of representation for your civil or criminal appeal, contact The Alderman Law Firm today for your free consultation by calling 720-588-3529 (CO) or 608-620-3529 (WI).