Santa Clara, CA asked in Criminal Law and Appeals / Appellate Law for California

Q: What Happens when I file for an Appeal before sentencing?

I was found guilty, I need to appeal ASAP but the holidays have wasted much needed time. My question and concern is....

Hypothetically, Lets say I get jail time..

1. Do I go into custody right then and there? I mean obviously.. I don't know but I don't want to court without informing work that I might not show up tomorrow lol but I don't want to explain to my boss and end up getting no jail time and return to work but now my boss knows this info that obviously I'd prefer to have kept private if I could. same with judgy family members ect.

2. does the appeal pause the sentencing part ? cuz I cant work on my appeal from inside jail? I cant pay for a lawyer if I'm in jail missing work..

like if a judge disagrees I'd assume no but what if I have good reasons for a new trial?

will I still go to jail untill that decision? because idk who will help me with any of this if I do go in this week

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: In California, if you are found guilty and wish to appeal, the process of sentencing and potential custody will depend on the specifics of your case and the judge's decision. Generally, sentencing occurs after a guilty verdict, and it's at this point the judge decides whether you'll be taken into custody immediately or allowed to remain free, possibly on bail, until sentencing or further proceedings.

1. Whether you go into custody right after being found guilty depends on the nature of your offense, your criminal history, and the court's assessment of your flight risk or danger to the community. In some cases, the court may allow you to remain out of custody until sentencing, especially if you've been free on bail during the trial. It's wise to prepare for both possibilities, as the decision can be unpredictable.

2. Filing an appeal does not automatically pause the sentencing or execution of the sentence. If you're sentenced to jail time, you might start serving your sentence before the appeal is heard. However, your attorney can request bail or a stay of the sentence pending appeal, which, if granted, would allow you to remain out of custody while the appeal is processed. This decision, again, is at the discretion of the court and is influenced by factors like the likelihood of your appeal succeeding and whether you pose a risk if not in custody.

Working on an appeal from jail can be challenging, but it's not impossible. Legal assistance is available in jail, and you can communicate with your lawyer to build your appeal. It's crucial to discuss these concerns with your attorney as soon as possible, as they can advise on the best course of action and help you navigate the complexities of the appeal process.

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