Many orders in family court are appealable. However, if one party has disregarded a court order, that party may be in contempt of court and unable to pursue an appeal. Pursuant to the disentitlement doctrine, the appellate courts have the inherent power to dismiss a case simply because one person refuses to abide by the lower court’s order. The appellate court views it as a means to induce compliance. Once a party is in compliance, that party can appeal the order as long as it is within the time frame set by statute.
An appeal can usually only be filed when a final judgment has been entered in a case. Otherwise, the appeals would be piecemeal dragging out the case and making it more expensive. A final judgment from a trial court renders all issues legally settled. As with many rules, there is an exception to the rule. When an order is made that is collateral to the main issue, then an appeal must be made immediately. Usually an order is appealable in family court when an item has been divided and ordered to be distributed. In that situation it is collateral to the main issue which is the divorce of the parties.
A court reporter transcribes the testimony in a court proceeding. If either party would like to appeal the court’s decision, a court reporter is crucial. If a court reporter is not provided by the courts, the parties may hire one under California Rules of Court, rule 2.956( c). If the parties fail to hire a court reporter, then no transcripts will be made. If there are no transcripts of the proceedings the appellate court cannot review the evidence. The reviewing court will not know the arguments each party made, or the facts admitted, assumed or judicially noticed. The moving party in an appeal, would not have evidence that there was an abuse of discretion. Because the court of appeal views all decisions in the light most favorable to the ruling court’s decision, an appeal would be fruitless without a transcript.
If you need a divorce attorney in the Orange County area to discuss a dissolution matter such as child support, custody, spousal support and property division, contact Treviño Law, Inc. Conveniently located off of the 5 and 405 freeway at Lake Forest.
Although the posting of this information can be considered free legal advice for an Orange County divorce, it does not guarantee a result. There may be other circumstances that play a significant role in any dissolution which may alter the outcome of a divorce. A divorce lawyer will be knowledgeable about the significance of facts. Those factors should be reviewed and argued by a family law attorney in Orange County.
Please note that this legal advice does not establish a family law attorney-client relationship.