Can I Appeal A Divorce Decree?
The short answer to whether you can or cannot appeal a divorce decree in Oklahoma is, “Yes.” However, doing so does not guarantee that the Appellate Court will change the Trial Court’s ruling. Appeals are very different from trial proceedings. Generally, for an appeal to be successful, you will need to show that the judge’s discretion – their ability to make decisions within the scope of the law – was not sound or that extenuating circumstances exist that the judge either did not know about or failed to take into account when issuing his/her ruling. Having your divorce reviewed by an experienced appellate and family law attorney will help you:
- Understand your case from a legal point of view;
- Understand your legal options based on the verdict and circumstances; and
- Understand your legal rights as well as important dates and deadlines for filing an appeal.
Here’s a closer look:
Can You Appeal The Divorce Decision?
What this question is asking is whether or not you can appeal the Judge’s decision to grant the divorce itself as opposed to appealing any specific ruling within the divorce decree such as: child support, spousal support, property division, etc.
Yes, you can appeal the judge’s decision to grant or deny a divorce petition; however, you will need a good reason to do so. Simply not agreeing with the decision is likely not enough. This is why it is important to use an experienced appellate and family law attorney if you plan to appeal.
Can You Appeal Certain Aspects of A Divorce Ruling?
In addition to terminating the marriage, the Trial Court entered certain rulings that affect you as to your divorce and that you believe was erroneous. For example, you may believe the Trial Court made a mistake as to child support, visitation or custody. You may believe the Court erred as a matter of law as to how the debts and assets were divided. The question becomes, “Can you petition to change how certain aspects of the Trial Court’s ruling, such as child support, spousal support, or the division of marital debts and assets?”
Yes, you can appeal the Trial Court’s decision as to certain specific aspects of the final divorce decree. If you have undergone a divorce process and are not happy with the results, you should contact our team to discover if you have the option to appeal the decision.
Does It Matter When You Appeal A Divorce Ruling?
Yes, in fact, appeal deadlines are very important. Some matters, like child support and visitation, are modifiable in the future by way of a motion filed in the Trial Court. Other matters, however, like property distribution awards, are not modifiable and may only be altered via a timely filed appeal. Failing to have your appeal filed before the deadline expires is likely devasting to your case. Generally, and in most cases, you have thirty (30) days to file your appeal after the Court’s entry of the Final Order or you are forever barred from addressing the issue again. As time is of the essence, it is very important to contact an experienced attorney quickly if you plan to appeal the decision.
Contact Brown & Gould With Your Family Law Questions
Brown & Gould, PLLC offers a range of professional legal services to the greater Oklahoma community. Learn more about your divorce outcome by calling to discuss your divorce or divorce judgment with our team.