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Filing an appeal in New Jersey civil court

New Jersey residents may be interested in how a civil appeal is filed. The courts have strict rules on structure and pre-defined time limits. Knowing the regulations and requirements may make it more likely that an appeal will be heard.

Final judgments by a state administrative agency or those filed with the trial court may be appealed. The finality of the decision is based on the final resolution of all issues involved in the case.

However, appeals may not be filed on opinion or verbal decision. They must be filed on issues pertaining to procedure. The appeal must be filed within 45 days of the filed decision date. Agency decisions provide 45 days after the service date to file an appeal. When it appears likely that individuals will exceed the time limit for filing, they may request an extension through their legal representation.

If all the issues are not resolved during trial, as they are with an interlocutory order, the case may not be subject to appeal. In this case, the petitioner must ask the court for the right to appeal despite the matter not being fully discharged, and this must be done within 20 days. This motion must explain to the court why an appeal would be necessary before the final judgment is issued.

Furthermore, it is necessary to pay a fee and have a transcript of the proceedings, if it is available, and this may be done by ordering it from the court clerk or agency. Without a transcript, there will be a delay in the appeal.

Appealing a civil court decision may be a complex process, and consulting with an attorney is almost always beneficial. The attorney may provide guidance on whether all requirements have been satisfied and assist in filing the appeal.

Source: Superior Court of New Jersey, "Appellate Division Practice Checklist", November 04, 2014

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