Appellate Practice

In addition to trial work, Reuben Raucher & Blum has extensive experience in both the California Court of Appeal and the Ninth Circuit. This includes not only civil litigation matters, but its family law practice as well, setting Reuben Raucher & Blum apart from most family law boutiques.

There are in essence three situations in which experience in the appellate courts is essential. First, when a case has been litigated all the way to judgment, the client needs lawyers who can defend the result or, if necessary, challenge it. The issues which are important to a reviewing court are often very different from those which are significant in the trial court, and a thorough understanding of the appellate process is necessary for success.

Second, the firm is sometimes asked to handle the appeal of a case in which it did not serve as trial counsel. This can happen where the original attorney does not practice in the Court of Appeal – as often happens in the family law context –or sometimes just because it is helpful to have a fresh perspective on a case.

Third, it is sometimes necessary to seek appellate intervention in the midst of trial court proceedings. This can happen in cases of emergency or where the petitioning party believes the trial court has made a grievous legal error which cannot be corrected through the normal trial process. These kinds of appellate proceedings are called “writs.” While the vast majority of writs are denied, the odds of success can be significantly improved by appellate lawyers who understand the process and the types of issues likely to catch the attention of the Court of Appeal. Because the firm has extensive writ experience, it has an enviable track record in such proceedings.

Representative Results

  • Secured affirmance in full on appeal of the early dismissal of a case under California’s Anti-SLAPP statute, in which a partner accused a partnership of presenting inaccurate information to a state agency.  The partnership was awarded all of its attorney’s fees.
  • Obtained reversal of a trial court’s order dismissing claims for fraud against Lehman Brothers’ officers and directors.
  • Procured emergency writ of mandate in favor of father, reversing trial court’s refusal to exercise jurisdiction over custody dispute where mother had moved to New York.