Ineffective Counsel May Allow You to Appeal a Conviction

A criminal conviction can be disheartening and even frightening. Once you’ve received a guilty verdict, what happens next? Is a conviction always set in stone? There may be some instances in which you can appeal your conviction. The Philadelphia attorneys at Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford have a full understanding of the criminal appeals process. We know about the circumstances that may allow you to question your trial or conviction.

What if your trial attorney was in some way unprofessional or performed legal procedures incorrectly? This would be unfair to you; therefore, ineffective counsel is one of the reasons courts may allow defendants to request an appeal. According to Cornell University Law School’s Legal Information Institute, everyone in a criminal trial deserves to have sound, effective legal counsel.

In order to qualify for the appeal of a criminal conviction based on ineffective counsel, you would need to prove your lawyer failed to adequately represent you. It would not be enough simply to be unhappy with your conviction or to say that you thought you had a bad lawyer. Some possible examples of ineffective counsel might include the following:

  • Your lawyer consistently arrived late to court appointments or filed paperwork late.
  • He or she made important decisions on your case without talking to you first.
  • Your attorney was never available to talk to you or always failed to return your calls.
  • Unprofessional behavior, such as dressing flamboyantly or falling asleep in court, was common.

Your lawyer frequently got legal procedures or terminology wrong.
If you believe you have a valid argument that your lawyer’s behavior or lack of knowledge unfairly impacted you in court, you might have a case for an appeal.