Civil Court Appeals

Introduction to appealing the Decision of a Civil Court

Frequently clients are anxious to know whether they can appeal in the event of an unsuccessful claim or defence long before their case is even heard. For others, it is the most pressing question after the judgment is pronounced. Some appeals can be brought as of right. Most other decisions can be appealed with permission. However, it is comparatively rare for decisions, particularly after trial, to be appealed. In recent times a total of about 1,600 appeals are completed each year in the Court of Appeal, of which just 25% are successful. Each year there are about 50 civil appeals to the House of Lords, of which about a third achieve some success. However in 2009, the judicial role of the House of Lords as the highest appeal court in the UK ended and from 1st October 2009, the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom assumed jurisdiction on points of law for all civil law cases in the UK and all criminal cases in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Civil appeals frame

  • County Court District judges may be appealed to County Court Circuit judges;
  • High Court Masters and District Judges may be appealed to Supreme Court Judge;
  • County Court Circuit Judges may be appealed to a Supreme Court Judge;
  • Supreme Court Judges may be appealed to the Court of Appeal; and
  • Court of Appeal decisions may be appealed to the Supreme Court.

Time for bringing an appeal

An appeal is brought by filing the appeal notice. This must be done within 21 days after the date of the decision of the lower court, unless the lower court has directed some other period for bringing the appeal.

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For more information on:

  • Permission to appeal
  • Service of appellant’s notice on the respondent
  • Respondent’s notice
  • Nature of appeal hearings
  • Stay of execution
  • Fresh evidence