Appeals to Ohio Court of Appeals


   Ohio law allows most cases to be appealed to a Court of Appeals. Ohio has a Court of Appeals in 12 geographical districts. One must usually appeal to the Court of Appeals for one’s district before being able to seek appeal to the Supreme Court of Ohio. The person appealing a ruling against them is the “appellant.” The person responding to appeal is the “appellee.” One can also appeal most decisions made by an administrative agency. In addition to attorney fees, the costs in an appeal usually include a filing fee and reproduction of the trial transcript if a hearing was held. The transcript cost is calculated by the page and can be $200 or more per hour of testimony. A litigant who cannot afford the filing and transcript costs can ask the Court of Appeals to waive those costs.


            The court of appeals will review only those arguments brought to their attention by your attorney and will grant relief only if the trial court erred. The Court of Appeals will not hear evidence or include evidence not put in the record at trial. Moreover, the Court of Appeals will usually not entertain arguments not made at the trial court. Thus, a good appellate attorney is one who studies the trial court record diligently, researches the law thoroughly, and writes clearly and succinctly. Good appellate attorneys search hard for applicable arguments or statutes that the trial court did not see or think of.


            One who loses in the Court of Appeals can ask the Supreme Court of Ohio to review their case. The Supreme Court, however, reviews less than ten percent of the cases submitted to it. My first task as your attorney, therefore, is to convince the Supreme Court that your case is important to decide for the state of Ohio as a whole. That includes writing both with clarity about the law and with passion as to why your case is important. If the Supreme Court “accepts jurisdiction,” the case proceeds like an appeal.


            As your attorney, I will assess the merits of your potential appeal honestly, and, more importantly, will be diligent in trying to reach a winning result because I care about your rights and I hate losing.


            In addition to my experience as an extern with the Second District Court of Appeals during law school, my appellate experience is listed below. For those cases after 2007 with Supreme Court numbers, the briefs can be found at the Ohio Supreme court website at Click at left on “clerk of courts and case information” and then on “online docket.” Search by name: Smith Erik or by Supreme Court case number.




State ex rel. Otten v. Wyler, Sup. Ct. Case No. 2008-0054.


(Amicus brief (friend-of-the–court) supporting father--complaint dismissed after respondent took requested judicial action.)





In re Adoption of P.A.C., 126 Ohio St. 3d 236 (Sup. Ct. No. 2009-1757)


(Amicus brief urging acceptance of case—appeal accepted. Merit brief as amicus urging reversal—reversal granted.)




In re T.S., 2007-Ohio-5900


(Appellate brief with the attorney representing the appellant/mother--won on appeal)




Heart of Adoptions Inc. v. J.A., 2007 Fla. LEXIS 1236 (FL. Sup. Ct. July 12, 2007)


(Amicus brief with the attorney representing CUB urging reversal—reversal granted.)




Hamad v. Hamad, 2007-Ohio-2239


(Appellate brief for appellant/husband's attorney--partial reversal)




In re Young, 2006-Ohio-4537


(Amicus brief to Ohio Supreme Court supporting mother/appellant--jurisdiction declined)




Smith v. Hayes, 2005-Ohio-2961


(Pro se at all stages)




Hollins v. Massanari, No. 01-3535, (6th Cir. 2002)


(Petition for certiorari to U.S. Supreme Court for attorney representing claimant--cert denied)



The above cases are rmerely representative examples.  Erik L. Smith does not guarantee that a certain result will occur in a similar situation.  Please read disclaimer.