If you have been convicted of a crime and your appeal has been unsuccessful, there is still hope: post-conviction relief may be available to vacate your conviction.
A motion for post-conviction relief is filed with the trial court. It is filed after a direct appeal has been decided. If you have lost your direct appeal you can, in certain circumstances, argue that what happened during your trial or guilty plea fundamentally violated your constitutional rights.
Who Can File For Post-Conviction Relief?
There are strict limits on when a motion for post-conviction can be filed. The most common reason for post-conviction relief is ineffective assistance of counsel.
For example, did your lawyer fail to file a motion or call a witness? Did your lawyer fail to object to inadmissible evidence or fail to demand that the government furnish you with evidence favorable to your defense? If the failure to do so prejudiced you, then you may be entitled to post-conviction relief.
A thorough review of the trial record is required to identity issues that can be brought in a post-conviction challenge. If you have been convicted recently and lost your appeal, the law imposes strict time limitations on your ability to file a motion for post conviction relief. Failure to meet those time limitations means you are forever barred from challenging your conviction. For this reason, it is critical that, should your appeal be rejected, you hire experienced post-conviction counsel to investigate whether you have grounds to overturn your conviction.
To File Correctly, Experience Is Needed
Motions for post-conviction relief can be filed in both state and federal court. Federal proceedings, however, cannot be initiated until after all state matters have concluded.
There are also technical, stringent legal requirements for filing motions. Failure to properly allege the facts giving rise to your challenge can result in your motion being dismissed without a hearing. As with time constraints, experienced counsel will ensure your motion meets the legal requirements to merit consideration by the trial court.
How To Contact Us
If you need an attorney to file a motion for post-conviction relief, call the law firm of Sheppard, White, Kachergus, & DeMaggio, P.A., in Jacksonville, Florida, to schedule an appointment. Our lawyers will analyze your case to see if you are entitled to have your conviction vacated. Call us anytime at 904-701-0589 or contact us online. Our after hours number is 904-727-7191.