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Three “Documents” the Court of Appeals Considers in Deciding a Case

Sometimes it is easy to think when you consider an appeal, the Court of Appeals really retries the case. However, the appellate record is quite limited; understanding this will help you understand what an appellate court can review and consider and what it cannot. The materials considered directly and indirectly on appeal are the following:

  1. Transcript: The Court of Appeals typically has a typed transcript of every question and answer put forth in a trial. This is called the “transcript.”
  2. Exhibits: The transcript (oral testimony) is accompanied by the exhibits. These are typically paper documents admitted at trial.
  3. Appendices: Each party can submit an appendix. For the most part, these are motions, pleadings, and orders that were issued along the way.

This noted, there is often the desire for appellants to want to bring to an appeal other cases, matters not raised at trial and similar matters that are not a part of the record (the transcript and exhibits) and appendix. In most cases, these cannot be considered.

Thus, understanding what can and cannot be considered in the appellate process will help you understand the nature, scope and reasons for an appeal. This will help you help your counsel make the most of your appeal.

This blog post was written by attorneys at Ciyou & Dixon, P.C. It is hoped it helps you understand the appellate process. This is not intended as a solicitation for legal services or legal advice. Ciyou & Dixon, P.C. attorneys handle appeals from all Indiana trial courts.


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Ciyou & Dixon, P.C., is a law firm located in Indianapolis, Indiana. We serve clients in six core practice areas: family lawappellate practicefirearms lawgeneral practicepersonal injury and criminal law.

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Based in Indianapolis and founded in 1995, Ciyou & Dixon, P.C. is a niche law firm focused on successfully dealing with the complexities of divorce, high-conflict child custody and family law. Known for their ability to solve extremely complex situations with high quality work and responsiveness, Ciyou & Dixon will guide you every step of the way. The family law attorneys at Ciyou & Dixon, P.C. will help you precisely identify your objectives and the means to reach your desired result. In addition, this practice focus is augmented by the firm's other three core areas, namely appellate advocacy, civil practice, and firearms law. Life is uncertain. Be certain of your counselSM.

Indianapolis Divorce Attorneys, Ciyou & Dixon, P.C. of Indianapolis, Indiana, offers legal services for Indianapolis, Zionsville, Noblesville, Carmel, Avon, Anderson, Danville, Greenwood, Brownsburg, Geist, Fortville, McCordsville, Muncie, Greenfield, Westfield, Fort Wayne, Fishers, Bloomington, Lafayette, Marion County, Hamilton County, Hendricks County, Allen County, Delaware County, Morgan County, Hendricks County, Boone County, Vigo County, Johnson County, Hancock County, and Tippecanoe County, Indiana.