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39111 Six Mile Road

Livonia, MI 48152

Michigan's Premier Christian Law Firm 

(800) 597-0284

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Can I Appeal an Issue that I Forgot to Raise During My Trial? 

     No.  However, there are exceptions.  The appeals court does not have to hear an issue or an argument raised for the first time during the appeal.  The Michigan Supreme Court has told us that “a litigant must preserve an issue for appellate review by raising it in the trial court, [such that] a failure to raise an issue waives review of that issue on appeal.”1   However, the Michigan Supreme Court has also told us that “the preservation requirement is not an inflexible rule; it yields to the necessity of considering additional issues when necessary to a proper determination of a case.” 2

The Plain Error Rule


     Where an issue was not properly preserved in the lower court, an appellate court may still review the unpreserved issue under what is known as the plain error rule.  “To avoid forfeiture under the plain error rule, three requirements must be met: 1) error must have occurred, 2) the error was plain, i.e., clear or obvious, 3) and the plain error affected substantial rights.  The third requirement generally requires a showing of prejudice, i.e., that the error affected the outcome of the lower court proceedings.” 

 Related Links:

How much does an appeal cost?

Why Are Appeals So Expensive?

We are Experienced Appellate Lawyers

      We handle challenging, high-stakes problems that can only be resolved in our highest courts. 


     Our appellate courts exist because judges and juries are not infallible. If you believe that a judge or a jury made a mistake in your case, we may be able to help you.  That is, upon review of your case, we may be able to help secure a reduced sentence; a new trial; a remand; a record expungement; or, improve the outcome of your case in some other way.


    Please note well that, as Christian attorneys, you can rest assured that if we think that you do not have grounds for an appeal, we will tell you.


[1] Walters v Nadell, 481 Mich 377, 386; 751 NW2d 431 (2008).  See also In re Forfeiture of Certain Personal Property, 441 Mich 77, 84; 490 NW2d 322 (1992) (“Issues and arguments raised for the first time on appeal are not subject to review.”); Duray Dev, LLC v Perrin, 288 Mich App 143, 149; 792 NW2d 749 (2010) (explaining that to preserve an issue for appeal, a party must specifically raise it before the trial court).


[2] Klooster v City of Charlevoix, 488 Mich 289, 310; 795 NW2d 578 (2011) (citations and internal quotations omitted).

DISCLAIMER: All information contained in this website is for education purpose only. Law Offices of RL Johnson PLLC, its agents and affiliates cannot and will not render any legal or tax advice of any kind, unless said agent is duly licensed by the applicable state and/or federal authority to give said advice.


© 2012 by Law Offices RL Johnson PLLC

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