Appointment Process

Information about how to appeal and request an attorney at no cost.

Starting an Appeal & Obtaining an Attorney

When to file a notice of appeal

The superior court must receive the notice of appeal within 60 days of the sentencing, disposition hearing, or order being appealed.

How to file a notice of appeal

If you wish to file a notice of appeal:

  1. Ask your trial attorney to file a notice of appeal.
  2. Call ADI 619-696-0282 and ask for the attorney of the day, who can file a notice of appeal on your behalf.
  3. Deliver or mail a notice of appeal to the superior court using one of the forms below.

How to Obtain an Attorney

If you cannot afford to retain an attorney, the Court of Appeal will appoint an attorney to represent you in the appeal. ADI administers the appointed counsel system for the California Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District.

ADI receives copies of the notices of appeal filed in criminal, juvenile, mental health, LPS conservatorship, and Family Code § 7800 appeals. ADI will automatically prepare the case for appointment of counsel.

ADI begins by sending clients a financial packet to complete and return. The financial information helps ADI determine if the client qualifies for appointed counsel. When you receive this form, please complete and return it as soon as possible. If you have questions about how to complete the form, contact ADI.

Once ADI establishes that a person qualifies for appointed counsel, ADI will file a recommendation for counsel on appeal with the Court of Appeal. The appointed attorney could be a staff attorney for ADI or an experienced panel attorney dedicated to this practice. When the court orders the appointment of counsel, ADI will send you a letter with information on how to contact your attorney.