If your case goes to trial, then the next phase in the litigation process is either side can appeal from the judgment.

Notice of Appeal

Parties to a Maryland medical malpractice case in the circuit court can appeal to the Appellate Court of Maryland by filing a notice of appeal under Rules 8-201 and 8-202. The appealing party must file the notice of appeal within 30 days of the judgment or order they are appealing. Rule 8-202(a).


Rule 8-202(c) is a significant rule that has tripped up many parties. It applies to motions under Rule 2-532 (Judgment NOV), 2-533 (New Trial), and 2-534 (Alter or Amend Judgment). The party must file the notice of appeal within 30 days after the court’s order on the motion.

Parties must pay close attention to what they are appealing from. Often, a party gets to the appellate court to realize that they did not appeal from the judgment but only from the denial of the post-trial motion. The appellate court may use a much more deferential standard to review the denial of the motion than in reviewing a judgment.

If one party files a timely notice of appeal, then any other party may file a notice of appeal within ten days. Rule 8-202(e).

A party must also file an information report with the notice of appeal. Rule 8-205. The appellee must also file an information report within ten days of receiving the appellant’s report. Rule 8-205(c).

Enforcement Stay & Scheduling

Rule 8-424 provides that enforcement proceedings are stayed to the extent of insurance coverage if the insurer files an affidavit as directed. Make sure the insurer files this affidavit. Otherwise, you can begin enforcement.

Under Rule 8-206, the appellate court may order the parties to mediation or prehearing conference. In addition, the court may set a scheduling conference. The court will set a schedule for the briefing and argument of the appeal.

Record, Record Extract & Briefs on Appeal

The appellant must order a transcript in writing from the trial court reporter. The transcript must include all the testimony or parts necessary for the appeal and any proceeding recorded that is relevant to the appeal. Rule 8-411.

The appellant files the request to the court reporter and the transcript with the lower court for inclusion in the record and serves a copy on the appellee. Rule 8-411(c). Rule 8-412 sets the time for the trial court clerk to transmit the record to the appellate court. Subsection (d) provides for a motion to extend the time.

Rule 8-413 provides the content of the record. The lower court clerk is usually receptive to a lawyer’s request to inspect the record for completeness before transmitting it. That is good practice.

The appellant must prepare a record extract, Rule 8-501. This volume contains the parts of the record necessary to determine the questions on appeal. Subsection (d) provides how the parties designate the items for inclusion in the record extract. Subsections (h) and (i) provide for a table of contents and the style and format of the record extract.

Rule 8-503 provides the style and form of the parties’ briefs, and Rule 8-504 provides the briefs’ contents—the filing time links to the transmission of the record under Rule 8-412(c). In addition, Rule 8-112 generally provides the form of the court papers.

Oral Argument & Decision

At the oral argument, each side gets 20 minutes in the Appellate Court of Maryland and 30 minutes in the Supreme Court of Maryland. Rule 8-522.

Rules 8-602 and 8-603 provide the grounds and procedures for dismissal of an appeal.

Rules 8-604 and 8-606 provide the different ways that the appellate courts can determine an appeal and the mandate reflecting the court’s judgment.

Finally, upon conclusion of the appeal, the appeals court can assess costs by Rules 8-607 and 8-608. A party can then enforce the assessment of costs under Rule 8-611.

After a decision of the Appellate Court, a party can ask the Supreme Court of Maryland to review the case by filing a petition for writ of certiorari. Rule 8-303. Subsection (b) provides for the contents. Within 15 days, the other party can file an answer or cross-petition. Rule 8-303(e).

In most instances, the appeal to the Supreme Court is discretionary. The Supreme Court does not have to take the case.

Most of our cases settle at mediation before trial in the circuit court, which can take a year or more. The potential for protracted litigation increases significantly if the case goes to trial. Either side can appeal, adding 1 to 1 ½ years to the litigation. In addition, if the Supreme Court takes the case, that could lengthen the process by another year to 1 ½ years.

You can read more on the Baltimore Medical Malpractice Lawyer Blog about Maryland appellate case opinions that discuss legal issues about appeals. This includes the following:

  • Freeland v. Clark: discussing the scope of appeal when a post-trial motion is involved.
  • Asplundh v. Metzger: finding that issues were not preserved for appeal, because ethe lawyer failed t object to questions after denial of a motion in limine.

Next Step

Now that you have finished reading about the entire litigation process, you can start your case now. Visit the free consultation page or video. Then contact the Kopec Law Firm at 800-604-0704 to speak directly with Attorney Mark Kopec. He is a top-rated Baltimore medical malpractice lawyer. The Kopec Law Firm is in Baltimore and pursues cases throughout Maryland and Washington, D.C.

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Mark is a knowledgeable and empathetic lawyer who speaks directly and concisely to evaluate your problem. He doesn't use attorney jargon that confuses people, rather he talks clearly. Although he couldn't help me with my situation, the consultation I had was productive because he answered my questions and gave me some clarity.

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