As much as substantive areas of the law, appellate practice is a specialty. The presentation of a case on appeal requires more than a fleeting familiarity with a set of rules that differ from those involved in the trials of civil or criminal cases. From the filing of the notice of appeal to post-decision motions, briefing, and argument, appellate practice necessitates skills, knowledge, and experience that are quite different than those necessary and productive in trial courts. What may be effective advocacy before a trial judge or jury may be counter-productive on appeal. The attorneys in Eckert Seamans’ appellate practice are schooled and experienced in these differences to better serve clients when they find themselves in the appellate courts.
Our team includes a former Pennsylvania attorney general, a former member of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s Appellate Courts Procedural Rules Committee, and a number of seasoned practitioners, some of whom served as law clerks in the Pennsylvania and federal appellate courts. Our attorneys have argued in the United States Supreme Court, virtually all of the federal circuit courts of appeals, the Court of International Trade, the Army Court of Criminal Appeals, the Court of Appeals for the Armed Services, and many state appellate courts.
Our attorneys have experience, not only in briefing and arguing cases on appeal, but also in drafting petitions and motions that entice an appellate court to exercise its discretionary power to review a case in the first place; those petitions are often dispositive of cases on appeal. We bring a vast array of practical experience in successful appeals.
Our appellate attorneys often become involved in cases at the earliest of stages in order to guarantee that potential appellate issues are identified and preserved to enhance the likelihood of success in the event that an appeal becomes necessary. Our appellate team is available to handle or to assist in any appeal in which a client may be involved. We are frequently called upon after the trial of a case to take or defend an appeal. We also are available to assist current counsel in perfecting and litigating a case on appeal. Our attorneys also have substantial experience in preparing and filing amicus curiae or “friend of the court” briefs in cases of interest to persons or groups that are not parties to the actual dispute before the court.