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Appealing an Order made by the High Court


  • You have a copy of the Order under appeal

  • You are within time limit

If the case was decided in the High Court of Justice, you may be able to appeal to Her Majesty's Court of Appeal in Northern Ireland.

The Appeal will be heard by a panel of appellate judges and must follow the Rules of the Court of Judicature (NI) 1980 and specific rules under Order 59 which govern the appeal process.

Remember that court staff cannot give legal advice.

You can find information and download a template for a Notice of Appeal here.

How to appeal

Necessary Forms:

  • Notice of Appeal

  • Copy of Court Order

  • Written judgment (if any)

To appeal a decision of the High Court, you must complete and file a Notice of Appeal in which you set out your reasons for appealing the original decision. The original Notice of Appeal (NoA) must be filed with the Central Office at the Royal Courts of Justice within 21 calendar days of the decision date you seek to appeal. You can check with the court office if you have any queries. The email address is

Once you have filed your NoA with the Central Office, you have 7 calendar days to send a copy of the Notice of Appeal (this is called "serving" the Notice) to the other side.  The Notice of Appeal contains a section where you indicate the manner of service, such as via first class post or hand delivery.  The section containing the particulars of service must be signed and dated.

Once you have served the Notice upon the other party, you must, within 7 calendar days, send or bring to the Central Office 2 copies of the Notice of Appeal with the particulars of service and the Order and judgment you are appealing.

Once you have completed these steps, the Appeal will be listed for hearing.

Time limit to appeal

Estimated Timeline:

  • File Notice of Appeal within 21 days.

  • Serve notice within 7 days after filing.

  • File the completed paperwork within 7 days after service 

An application for an appeal must be made within 21 calendar days of the original decision. It may be possible to obtain an extension to the 21 calendar day limit, but only with very good reason. Do not assume that the Court will extend time beyond the strict statutory time limits.


If in doubt you should seek legal advice immediately or you should file your appeal within the strict timescales.


Court Orders are usually sent out approximately 5 days after the hearing. If you are appealing a decision, you may want to arrange to collect a copy of the Order from the court office by emailing the court office. Usually, a copy of the judgment will be handed down to the parties. It should also be available through judgments published online. 

What Happens Next

  • Remember to check that you have reasonable grounds to appeal.

  • Order 59 of the Rules of Court of Judicature (NI) 1980 governs the appeal process

Once the Notice of Appeal has been filed and set down, the Court will list a date for a first hearing of the Appeal where the panel of appellate judges will set out a timetable for the appeal. In an appeal before the Court of Appeal, the appellant (party appealing) must, not less than 7 days before hearing, file documents with the Central Office in a special format known as a "Court Bundle."

The Practice Direction describes what goes into a Court Bundle. The Bundle should include a skeleton argument, existing Orders and other relevant documents, such as reports and witness statements.

Grounds of Appeal

  • Remember to check that you have reasonable grounds to appeal.

  • Order 59 of the Rules of Court of Judicature (NI) 1980 governs the appeal process

The law on appeals can be complex and you should think carefully about whether to appeal the judge’s decision and whether you have a good reason to appeal.  If you appeal, you will need to detail why you are appealing the decision, including the grounds you wish to rely on. Generally, grounds of appeal are divided into two areas:

  1. Error of law

  2. Serious procedural irregularity


The Notice of Appeal should clearly explain how the decision was wrong in law or how procedure was not followed correctly. This means you will need to make detailed legal and procedural points in your application. If you are unsure about the basis for appeal, you should get legal advice or seek support.

Application Checklist

  • Be sure to file within the time limit

  • Obtain proof of postage for serving on the other party

  • Completed NoA filed with the central office of the Royal Courts of Justice

  • Copy of the court Order under appeal

  • Written reasons for the decision or judgment

  • Application Fee 

  • Remember to serve a copy of the NoA on all other parties within 7 calendar days of filing with the central office

  • Remember to get the Appeal listed by filing 2 copies of the NoA, one of which must be stamped and endorsed with particulars of service

Further Information

  • Remember to check the procedural rules

For further information on appeals, you can visit our Family Court Info site which contains details on the process of appealing a decision which also contains the court rules.


Fees will be payable upon lodging an appeal. The current fee to appeal to the Court of Appeal is £652. For further information on courts fees click here.


To read more about Court offices, you can go here.

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