What are the Possible Outcomes of a Criminal Appeal in Minnesota?

possible outcomes of a criminal appeal in minnesota

An arrest and criminal offense charge is life-altering. Your location and criminal charge won’t matter; criminal offenses face a trial or settlement from a judge.

If you’ve received a criminal conviction in Minnesota but believe that there was a legal error during your trial or court case, you can file for an appeal with the state. Even if you can file an appeal, what does that mean?

Filing for an appeal brings about a few possible outcomes. Here’s a look into the possible results of a criminal appeal in Minnesota.

You Have a Limited Amount of Time To File Your Criminal Appeal

criminal appeal in minnesota

Before we dive into the possible outcomes of a criminal felony appeal in Minnesota, it’s essential to go over the timeline for an appeal since there is a limited amount of time to file for one.

The felony appeal process begins with a document called a Notice of Appeal. According to Minnesota criminal law, you and your defense must submit your Notice of Appeal within 60 days of the decision made in your case.

Something to note about appeals is that prosecutors cannot appeal a non-guilty conviction. So, if you’re found not guilty, they cannot appeal that conviction, so you don’t have to worry about that.

The Three Possible Outcomes of Criminal Felony Appeal

Many assume you’ll have a new trial if you file for an appeal; unfortunately, that’s not the case. Even though an appeal won’t result in a new trial, three possible outcomes can come out of a criminal appeal in Minnesota.


The first and most common outcome of a criminal appeal is affirmation. When this happens, the courts review your case, defense, and appeal but ultimately decide to affirm the original decision. When the outcome is the affirmation, your original sentence is upheld, and nothing changes.

Since you’re appealing, this is the outcome you don’t want. In some cases, you can file a new appeal later, but that depends on several factors, so you’ll want to consult with a dedicated and experienced legal defense attorney at CJB Law.

Reverse and Vacate

Reverse and vacate is the outcome most people are seeking when they file for a criminal felony appeal. When you file an appeal, the lower court will review the original sentence and appeal documents.

If the court determines that there was a legal error, they can choose to reverse and vacate your sentence. This means the case is thrown out and officially over. You’re usually released from jail if you’re already there. However, the prosecution can seek a retrial.

Reverse and Remand

Another possible outcome of a criminal conviction appeal is reverse and remand. It’s similar to reverse can vacate because, in this decision, the court found a legal error; the difference is that this outcome does not mean your case is over. The reverse part of the outcome means that the lower courts will review the case again. The case returns to the lower court, and they will announce a new decision for your sentence.

Let Us Handle Your Appeal

criminal appeal in minnesota

No matter what type of criminal conviction you receive, it will change your life in one way or another. The good news is that if you feel like there has been a legal error throughout the trial that resulted in your conviction, you can file for a criminal appeal.

You need a great defense if you’re considering filing a criminal appeal. Contact CJB Law today to learn how our professional and experienced attorneys can assist you with your criminal appeal in Minnesota.