Self Help Resources

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California Appeals Process - Plain and Simple

This guide can help you understand what happens when a party who loses in the superior or trial court appeals the decision.

Here you can learn about every step of an appeal and find general information about the requirements for all parties. This includes the basic rules and fees, plus important forms and deadlines.

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More Resources Provided by Second Appellate District

For Attorneys and Self-Represented Litigants

For Self-Represented Litigants

Self-represented litigants that take advantage of these resources generally feel more comfortable vis-a-vis the appellate process by knowing ahead of time what to expect.

  • Civil Appellate Practices and Procedures for the Self-Represented (for the Second Appellate District)
  • California Courts Online Self-Help Center (Prepared by the Judicial Council of California)
  • Pro Bono Project
    A pilot program looking into offering representation in a limited range of cases to indigent litigants who are without the assistance of counsel.
  • Free Self-Help Clinic for Indigent Civil Litigants
    The Clinic is open by appointment only. Located on the Second Floor of the North Tower of the Ronald Reagan State Building, across from the Clerk’s Office.

    Appellate Self-Help Clinic: Public Workshops

    The Appellate Self-Help Clinic will be hosting public workshops offering help to individuals who want to learn how to build a persuasive case for court and tips on how to write an appellate brief.

    Writing an Appellate Brief:

    Thursday March 28th, May 23rd and August 1st
    The class involves one-on-one instruction and review of drafts exclusively for pre-screened self-represented litigants who have reached the stage of an appeal where they are ready to draft a brief. Click here for registration information, dates and times.

    Building Your Case and Persuading the Court:

    Thursday, May 16th and July 25th

    The class offers instruction on how to designate an adequate record on appeal. This includes the purpose and content of the clerk’s and reporter’s transcripts, contents of an appellate brief, appellate court rules, essential roles of the legal arguments in a brief, and filing deadlines. Click here for registration information, dates and times.


    Appointments are made by calling (213) 830-7234 on Tuesdays between 7:30 a.m. and noon.  Clinic staff will confirm appointments by telephone or e-mail no later than 4:00 p.m. that same day. Appointments will be for the next day the clinic is open, which is usually Wednesday.

    Priority for appointments will be given to the first ten callers who were not served in the Clinic the previous week.

    Those who do not receive appointment confirmation by 4:00 p.m. on the day of their call, do NOT have an appointment and will NOT be admitted to the Clinic.

    The clinic is open most Wednesdays from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon and 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. and the last Wednesday of each month from 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. ONLY.