Motions for Appropriate Relief

Our appellate blogosphere has been filled with an unusual number of posts involving dismissed appeals. However, the North Carolina Court of Appeals on Tuesday bestowed leniency on two appeals, utilizing Appellate Rules 2 and 21 to reach the merits of both appeals.  Curious as to what justified this cheerful news?  Keep reading.

Sarno v. Sarno involved a family law appeal facing a potential fatal obstacle based on  bizarre procedural facts: 1) a judgment that contained two different April 2016 file stamp dates, 2) no certificate of service for the judgment, 3) a record indicating that the judgment was not in the file on 12 May 2016, 4) a plaintiff who asserted that she had not received the judgment until 20 May 2016, and 5) notices of appeal not filed until well into June 2016.… Continue Reading

It was just over one year ago that I wrote about the authority of one appellate panel to overrule another panel when the issue is one of jurisdiction. Last week, the Supreme Court of North Carolina issued an opinion in that case that helps to explain the jurisdiction of the appellate courts. The opinion may also offer a preview of the analysis we will see in the pending State v.Continue Reading

In recent weeks we’ve had a number of posts that demonstrate the inherent authority and broad power of our appellate courts. See here and here. Another example of that power was on display in a criminal case decided last week by the Court of Appeals. In State v. Sandy, the Court invoked Rule 2 of the North Carolina Rules of Appellate Procedure to consider material outside the Record on Appeal in ruling on the appellants’ (criminal defendants who had been convicted in the trial court) motions for appropriate relief (MARs) that were filed in the Court of Appeals.… Continue Reading