When you face criminal charges, you have the right to an attorney. You probably understood that you needed the advice and guidance of someone familiar with both state law and established precedents to defeat those charges. You need someone to speak rationally on your behalf at a time when you will be anxious or angry. The lawyer who defends you has the power to set you free if they adequately argue your case.
Unfortunately, your lawyer didn’t provide you with the standard of representation that you expected. Perhaps they were seemingly unaware of crucial prior court rulings and suggested a defense that didn’t work. Maybe they failed to challenge statements made by the prosecutor or didn’t seek the help of a forensic expert to challenge the evidence against you.
If your lawyer gave you bad legal advice or otherwise failed to give you decent legal representation, you may have grounds for an appeal.
Proving you had ineffective counsel could help you
Your attorney is your advocate. They teach you about the criminal process and speak on your behalf. If they don’t give you accurate information or don’t know information other lawyers in this area of practice would, their shortcomings could constitute ineffective counsel. Their advice or actions must have caused issues that directly impacted your case in court.
What a lawyer does or does not do in the courtroom can have a massive impact on the outcome of a case. If the actions of a lawyer actively harmed someone’s legal case or prevented them from adequately defending themselves, the defendant could use those legal failures as justification for a criminal appeal.
Typically, you will need documentation supporting your claims of ineffective counsel, like court records showing that they failed to object at a crucial point in the trial. Understanding what circumstances give you grounds for a criminal appeal can help you continue fighting to prove your innocence.