Post-Conviction Relief and Habeas Corpus Lawyers in Florida

The state of Florida has numerous rules under 3.850 and 3.800 regarding ineffective assistance of counsel claims. Sometimes a defendant may only bring a 3.850 motion after a direct appeal is complete. In Florida, ineffective counsel may be brought during post-conviction litigation. Contact our Florida criminal appeals lawyers. Ineffective counsel claims involve:

  • INEFFECTIVE COUNSEL CLAIMS MAY RESULT IN A NEW TRIAL AND RE-SENTENCING PROCEEDINGS.
  • AN INEFFECTIVE COUNSEL CLAIM MAY ADDRESS ISSUES THAT ARE NOT ARGUED ON APPEAL.

3.850 post-conviction litigation requires scrutiny which involves a complete investigation of the case. We normally obtain a trial transcript to brief a 3.850 motion or claim. We must review trial dockets, evidence, exhibits, and notes from the clerk and any record on appeal.  Orlando post conviction motions proceeds to the Orange County Circuit Court or Orange County Court system.

Contact our Florida post conviction relief lawyers at (407) 388-1900.

The post-conviction investigation also often includes locating and interviewing witnesses and co-defendants. In some cases, mitigating evidence that was not presented during a trial may offer insight in a post-conviction litigation case. DNA testing and new technology also offer support for a new trial or hearing. At Brownstone Law, we have years of experience in successfully providing post-conviction litigation services. For legal assistance, please phone our office at (407) 388-1900 to arrange an appointment.  We handle post-conviction motions in Duval County, Miami-Dade County, Pinellas County, Orange County, Leon County, Broward County, St. Lucie County.

You have a limited amount of time to file a post-conviction claim. It is your right, and it is an important and critical opportunity which should not be wasted. Contact a Florida post-conviction attorney today at (407) 388-1900 to schedule your free initial consultation.  Our appeals attorneys in Florida also handle Florida appeals.

Florida Post-Conviction Attorney

A motion of habeas corpus is an appeal filed at the federal courts by defendants who have exhausted all their post-conviction relief motions, direct appeals to the circuit courts, state court habeas claims and PDR claims. According to the anti-terrorism and effective death penalty act, this motion has to be filed within 1 year and 90 days from the date of conviction. Our law firm has handled many of these cases and we, therefore, have enough experience to serve you. Contact a Florida post-conviction attorney at (407) 388-1900. Our appeals lawyers handle post-conviction cases and petitions in:

Our firm represents criminal and civil clients. Brownstone consistently performs appeals from Jacksonville, Tampa, Orlando, Miami, and all other Florida cities. Our motto is pride, passion and the pursuit of winning the argument on appeal. We combine years of experience, dedication, and skill in legal research to ensure that we present a strong winning appeal in any federal appeal courts across the nation. Handling federal appellate litigation in Florida can be complex and challenging, often requiring the knowledge and experience of an attorney who specializes solely in appeals. A Florida post-conviction attorney at Brownstone has successfully taken on a variety of appeals, and has the capability to handle all forms of federal appeals across the nation including:

  • CRIMINAL
  • CIVIL
  • INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY
  • CIVIL RIGHTS
  • CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS
  • ADMINISTRATIVE
  • BANKING
  • PROPERTY RIGHTS

With a unique commitment to federal appellate litigation, clients from across the nation seek the help of our firm to argue important cases. Our Florida appellate law firm is experienced in all areas of federal law. We appeal criminal cases and civil cases from Florida federal courts, including environmental, class actions, RICO, business disputes, constitutional litigation and energy issues such as oil and gas. Our appeal lawyers are ready to review your case and to create a solid strategy for a winning appeal. Set up a consultation with one of our appeal attorneys by calling us at (407) 388-1900.

Federal Post-Conviction and Habeas Corpus in Florida

When an appellate court is moved during the course of the direct appeal made in criminal matters, the court is restricted to undertaking a review of those issues that may constitute preserved legal error. Post- Conviction relief eliminates these restrictions and allows a re-evaluation and review of every aspect of the case in question. This reassessment may cover new evidence claims, involuntary plea claims, sentence legality and also the effectiveness of counsel.  Rule 3.850 of the Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure show persons convicted of crimes on how to challenge their judgment. Federal rules for post conviction are found under section 2255 and section 2254 for persons in state custody.

Post Conviction Relief in Ineffective Assistance Claims

Post conviction relief can be sought in the following cases: a claim of ineffective assistance by counsel, DNA test request, allegation of the sentence being illegal. If the post conviction relief is being sought under the first claim, there are some critical aspects to keep in mind.

  • THE DEFENDANTS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR PROVING THAT COUNSEL FAILED TO OFFER EFFECTIVE ASSISTANCE
  • THEY HAVE TO ESTABLISH CLEARLY THAT THE FINAL JUDGMENT GIVEN IN THE CASE WOULD HAVE BEEN MATERIALLY AFFECTED IF THEIR COUNSEL HAD OFFERED APPROPRIATE AND EFFECTIVE ASSISTANCE.

Post- conviction claims for ineffective counsel are filed in several situations. For example, a claim can be filed if the defendant believes that:

  • COUNSEL DID NOT INVESTIGATE/ AND OR FILE A MOTION TO SUPPRESS
  • COUNSEL DID NOT ADVISE OF PLEA OFFERS
  • COUNSEL DID NOT EDUCATE THE DEFENDANT ABOUT THE CONSEQUENCES OF REJECTING OR ACCEPTING PLEA OFFERS
  • COUNSEL DID NOT PRESERVE ISSUES FOR APPEAL AND REVIEW

 

Post Conviction Attorneys Florida

Post Conviction Attorney in Florida Motions for Relief Include

– Vacate a Previous Conviction
– Motions to Reduce Sentence
– Motion to Overturn Judgment
– Motion for Habeas Corpus Relief
– Commutations (Federal and State)
– Pardons
– Clemency
– Motions for new trial
– Motions Based on Newly Discovered Evidence

Contact our post conviction lawyers in Florida (407) 388-1900.

How to Prevail on a Florida Post Conviction Motion

As a general principle, to prevail on a claim of ineffective assistance of counsel, a defendant must demonstrate that (1) counsel’s performance was deficient and (2) there is a reasonable probability that the outcome of the proceeding would have been different had counsel not been deficient. See Torres-Arboleda v. Dugger, 636 So. 2d 1321, 1324 (Fla. 1994), construing Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668, 687, 694 (1984).  Thus, there is a two-part inquiry: counsel’s performance and prejudice. In reviewing counsel’s performance, the court must be highly deferential to counsel, and in assessing the performance, every effort must “be made to eliminate the distorting effects of hindsight, to reconstruct the circumstances of counsel’s challenged conduct, and to evaluate the conduct from counsel’s perspective at the time.” Spencer v. State, 842 So. 2d 52, 61 (Fla. 2003), quoting Strickland, 466 U.S. at 689. Indeed, the defendant bears the burden of showing that counsel’s errors were “so serious that counsel was not functioning as the ‘counsel’ guaranteed the defendant by the Sixth Amendment.” Strickland, 466 U.S. at 687.  Furthermore, a defendant must overcome the strong “presumption that counsel has rendered adequate assistance and made all significant decisions in the exercise of reasonable professional judgment…”  Blanco v. Wainwright, 507 So. 2d 1377, 1381 (Fla. 1987) (quoting Bertolotti v. State, 534 So. 2d 386, 387 (Fla. 1988)). In addition to showing counsel’s deficient performance, a defendant must also meet the prejudice prong of the Strickland test.  For this point, a defendant must demonstrate that there is a “reasonable probability that, but for the deficiency, the result of the proceeding would have been different.”  Spencer, 842 So. 2d at 61.  In other words, a defendant must demonstrate a “probability sufficient to undermine confidence in the outcome.”

Recent Florida Post Conviction Petitions

Under Florida post conviction law the corpus delicti doctrine states that it is “a fundamental principle of law that no person be adjudged guilty of a crime until the state has shown that a crime has been committed.” Corona v. State, 64 So. 3d 1232, 1243 (Fla. 2011) (citing State v. Allen, 335 So. 2d 823, 825 (Fla. 1976)). The traditional purpose of the corpus delicti rule was to ensure that a defendant would not be convicted solely on a mistaken confession to a crime that did not occur. See Allen, 335 So. 2d at 825. To demonstrate that a crime has been committed, the state “must show that a harm has been suffered of the type contemplated by the charges (for example, a death in the case of a murder charge or a loss of property in the case of a theft charge), and that such harm was incurred due to the criminal agency of another . . . A person’s confession to a crime is not sufficient evidence of a criminal act where no independent direct or circumstantial evidence exists to substantiate the occurrence of a crime.” Corona, 64 So. 3d at 1243. Moreover, the “judicial quest for truth requires that no person be convicted out of derangement, mistake or official fabrication.” Id. In order to ensure this quest for truth is satisfied, corpus delicti cannot be based solely on a defendant’s extra-judicial statements. Read more about the Florida Post Conviction Process: Florida Motion for Post Conviction Relief

 

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