How to Appeal Your Case from D.C. Superior Court
If you disagree with a decision from the D.C. Superior Court, you have the right to appeal.
Before you appeal, check the top of the court decision near the judge’s name.
- If it says “Magistrate Judge,” check out Legal Aid’s flyer about appealing Magistrate Judges’ decisions.
- If it says “Associate Judge” you can appeal using the steps listed below.
Step 1: Fill out the Notice of Appeal form.
This form is quick to fill out. To get the right form, call the Court of Appeals at (202) 879-2700 or follow these steps to get the form online:
- Go to https://www.dccourts.gov/services/forms/.
- Near the top of the page (next to blue search button), click the drop down button for “Choose Your Category” and click on “Court of Appeals.”
- Search for the form called “Notice of Appeal.”
Step 2: File the Notice of Appeal.
After you fill out the form, file it at Superior Court. If you make an account, you can file online at https://dc.casefilexpress.com/Login.aspx. Otherwise, bring the form in person. You can also mail the form to the Court, but we don’t recommend filing by mail.
Bring the form to this address (depending on what type of case):
- Landlord-Tenant Branch: Landlord and Tenants Clerk’s Office, 1st Floor, 510 4th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20001
- Civil Division: Superior Court of the District of Columbia, Civil Clerk's Office - Room 5000, 500 Indiana Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20001.
Step 3: Pay the filing fee (unless you have a fee waiver)
If you already have a fee waiver, you don’t have to pay. Otherwise, the filing fee is $100. Even if you haven’t already, you can ask for a fee waiver. Get the fee waiver form at https://www.dccourts.gov/sites/default/files/2017-06/dcca_form7a.pdf. File this form at the same time and in the same way that you file your Notice of Appeal.
Step 4: File a motion for free transcripts.
Within 10 days of filing your notice of appeal, you have to order from the Superior Court any transcripts you need and file a form with the Court of Appeals letting it know that you have done so. If you cannot pay for the transcripts, you have to file a motion for free transcripts which explains that you need the transcripts for appeal and that you have a good reason to appeal.
Is there a deadline to file a Notice of Appeal?
Yes. If you got the decision by mail, you have to file the notice of appeal within 35 days of the date the order or judgment was filed. If you got the decision any other way, you have to file the notice of appeal within 30 days of the date the order or judgment was filed.
The date the order or judgment was filed is usually the date on the order or judgment (but may be different from the date on the certificate of service attached to the order or judgment). If you mail in your appeal, it is not filed until the Court receives it. That is why we do not recommend filing by mail.
What happens next?
After you file your appeal, the Superior Court will notify the other side and the Court of Appeals. If you have questions, call the Court of Appeals at (202) 879-2700.