Houston Family Law Appeals Lawyer

At the end of a long trial, not receiving the outcome you were fighting for is frustrating, especially if a legal error led to the ultimate decision. Despite their serious nature, courts and judges can still make mistakes in family law cases. The result of these mistakes is often an unfavorable outcome. However, any party given an unfavorable ruling in family court can challenge the court’s ultimate decision and file an appeal.

Whether you are considering seeking to appeal a court decision or want to protect the initial result, you will need the legal assistance of a family lawyer with experience handling appeals to help ensure your rights are upheld. You can bring your appellate case to Stepp & Sullivan and partner with our expert legal team that has a track record of success.

Reasons You Need a Houston Family Law Appeals Lawyer

Appeal proceedings in family law are complex and confusing, requiring specific facts and adept legal skills to succeed. A Houston family law appeals attorney will help you navigate the complexities of an appeal and use their skills to fight for your best interests.

When you retain the services of a seasoned family law appeals lawyer, you will have access to a legal professional who can offer you the following services:

  • A thorough evaluation and analysis of your case
  • An in-depth explanation of your rights and options for filing an appeal
  • Collecting the necessary paperwork and other information to support your case
  • Advocating for your best interests

It can be quite challenging to overturn a court’s decision. The party who wants to appeal has the burden of proof, which might be challenging to meet. The appellate court will examine all of the evidence, the trial record, the appellant’s brief, and any responses submitted by the non-appealing party. Family lawyers with experience will invest the time and effort required to give you the individualized representation and legal aid you need.

What Is the Family Law Appeals Process in Houston?

An appeal is not something to be done lightly just because someone is not pleased with the overall outcome of a family law dispute. The nature of an appeal case is considerably different from the original family law matter, which is why having a family lawyer experienced with handling appeals is vital.

Notice of Appeal

Appeals have specific laws and procedures you must follow that are time-sensitive. Within 30 days of the ruling, the trial clerk must receive your notice of appeal, informing the court that you will file an appeal. The case record, including the grounds for appeal, is then prepared and sent to the appellate court by the clerk and reporter of the trial court. 

Filing the Appellant Brief

Then, you must file the appellant brief and accompanying papers within 30 days of the appellate court obtaining the record. Your appellant brief argues why the family court’s ruling was wrong. After that, the opposing party will have 30 days to submit an opposition brief. If they do so, you then have 20 more days to respond. The appellate court will subsequently render a judgment. It may opt to sustain, overturn, or send back the case for a fresh trial or other proceedings. 


You can ask the appellate court to consider an oral argument, but the court may judge your case without hearing oral arguments. Additionally, the parties may only argue about what transpired in front of the trial court. They are not permitted to present any fresh evidence or testimony. If the appellate court agrees with the appellant, they may reverse the trial court’s decision or return the case for a new trial. This process could take months or even years to complete, which can be expensive. With aid from a top-notch legal team, you may have a smoother appeals process.

Do I Need to Have Grounds to Appeal a Family Law Decision?

An appeal cannot be made simply because the decision in a case is unfavorable. You must have a legitimate justification for why the decision was wrong to seek an appeal, which can be difficult. To appeal a family law decision, you or your legal representation must demonstrate that a legal error took place. 

Different family law cases will have different grounds afforded to them. For example, valid grounds for appealing a divorce decree may include the judge making a mistake, the judgment was obtained through fraud, or there was an issue with the admissible evidence. 

Regardless of your situation, it is essential to speak with a knowledgeable Houston family appeals attorney to understand whether you can challenge your judgment. To succeed, you must present a compelling argument to convince the appellate court to overturn the judge’s decision. An expert lawyer might spot mistakes or discrepancies in the decree or the proceedings of your family law case.

Partner With a Talented Houston Family Law Appeals Lawyer

Family law cases are already challenging experiences, but appeals are complex and require a distinct skill set. With new rules and time-sensitive processes, seeking an appeal can cause you to become embroiled in another overwhelming legal matter. Without knowledgeable legal representation, your appeal process will likely be stressful and may not yield a more favorable outcome.

Reach out to the reliable family law appeals lawyers at Stepp & Sullivan for guidance and support through your appeals process. Our legal team can efficiently handle your appeal at every stage thanks to the abilities we have developed over our more than 40 years of combined legal experience. We will represent those in Houston, Texas, and throughout the United States, helping clients secure a favorable outcome and relieve stress. To schedule an appointment, call (713) 336-7200 or fill out our contact form.

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The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.

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