Appellate Advocacy Law and Legal Definition

Appellate advocacy means the legal representation by an attorney before any state or the U.S Supreme Court, or intermediate or circuit courts of appeals. The selection of issues more likely to prevail and the omission of weaker issues is proper appellate advocacy. Therefore, the process of winnowing out weaker arguments on appeal and focusing on those more likely to prevail, far from being evidence of incompetence, is the hallmark of effective appellate advocacy. It is the task of the appellate advocate to select only those issues which will effectively persuade the court to accept the advocate's position as the correct legal determination of the case. A relevant but legally unsupportable issue should either be conceded or discussed briefly. An irrelevant issue, which will most likely be decided against the advocate, should never be used.