WomensLaw serves and supports all survivors, no matter their sex or gender.

Legal Information

After a Decision is Issued

Updated: September 21, 2021

Do I need a lawyer to appeal my case?

It is possible to file an appeal on your own, but it is generally a complicated procedure that involves written arguments (briefs) and technical rules of law. It is very hard to do without a lawyer. If you do decide to file an appeal on your own, you may want to talk to a lawyer for advice as you plan your strategy. You should also check your state’s judiciary website to see if there are resources for unrepresented (pro se) litigants. Often these websites will have pro se guides for the appeals process. For legal help, you can go to our Finding a Lawyer page, although you may have to call many places to find one that does appeals.

There is also an organization called DV LEAP, which takes civil appeal cases involving domestic violence or child abuse. This generally includes restraining orders, custody, divorce, or other civil cases. You can see their application form on the DV LEAP website. For other appeals organizations, please see our National Organizations - Appeals page.