Divorce Judgment Appeals:
Either or both spouses can appeal a trial court judge’s decision to a higher (“appellate” or “appeals”) court, but it is unusual for an appeals court to overturn a judge’s decision in a divorce case. This is why you need a highly competent Divorce Trial Lawyer, well-versed in divorce law, handling your case and winning at the Superior Court level..
Also, remember that settlement agreements usually cannot be appealed if both spouses agreed to the terms of the settlement. So, if you and your former spouse reached a settlement agreement on issues such as property division and appropriate child support payments, and that settlement agreement is approved and finalized by the judge, you are most likely stuck with the terms of that agreement. You may be able to ask the court to modify any judgment arising from the settlement agreement.
Motions to Modify the Divorce Judgment:
While appealing your divorce involves challenging the trial court’s decision in front of a higher court, you can also ask the trial court itself to change certain aspects of the divorce judgment after it has been entered — including child custody arrangements, visitation schedules, child support, and spousal support (alimony).
Such a request is usually made by filing a “motion to modify” the divorce decree or judgment. This motion is usually filed with the same court where divorce was originally filed (and where the divorce judgment was issued).
For example, if the divorce decree awarded primary physical custody of your children to your former spouse, and you later learn that he or she has been arrested for illegal drug possession, you may be able to ask the court to modify custody based on these new facts. Similarly, if the original divorce judgment required you to pay $2000 in child and spousal support, but you recently got laid off from your job, you can file a motion to temporarily modify support schedules.