Plead Guilty Then Appeal In California

The Penal Code in conjunction with the California Rules of Court places special limits on the filing of an appeal following a plea of guilty or nolo contendere. Section 1237.5 provides that "no appeal shall be taken by the defendant from a judgment of conviction [in the superior court] upon a plea of guilty or nolo contendere . .. except where both of the following are met: (a) the defendant has filed with the trial court a written statement, executed under oath or penalty of perjury, showing reasonable constitutional, jurisdictional, or other grounds going to the legality of the proceedings. (b) the trial court has executed and filed a certificate of probable cause for such appeal with the county clerk." "Rule 31(d), first paragraph, implements section 1237.5 by providing, in pertinent part, that the defendant may not take or prosecute an appeal unless he has filed the statement of certificate grounds as an intended notice of appeal within 60 days after rendition of judgment, and has obtained a certificate of probable cause for the appeal within 20 days after filing of the statement and, hence, within a maximum of 80 days after rendition of judgment. [Citations.]" ( People v. Mendez (1999) 19 Cal. 4th 1084, 1095 [81 Cal. Rptr. 2d 301, 969 P.2d 146].) "If a judgment of conviction is entered upon a plea of guilty or nolo contendere, the defendant shall, within 60 days after the judgment is rendered, file as an intended notice of appeal the statement required by section 1237.5 of the Penal Code; but the appeal shall not be operative unless the trial court executes and files the certificate of probable cause required by that section. Within 20 days after the defendant files the statement the trial court shall execute and file either a certificate of probable cause or an order denying a certificate and shall forthwith notify the parties of the granting or denial of the certificate." (Rule 31(d).) "Section 1237.5 has been held to admit" exceptions to the general rule. ( People v. Lloyd (1998) 17 Cal. 4th 658, 663 [72 Cal. Rptr. 2d 224, 951 P.2d 1191].) The second paragraph of rule 31(d) implements these exceptions by providing as follows: "If the appeal from a judgment of conviction entered upon a plea of guilty or nolo contendere [in superior court] is based solely upon grounds: (1) occurring after entry of the plea which do not challenge its validity or (2) involving a search or seizure, the validity of which was contested pursuant to section 1538.5 of the Penal Code, the provisions of section 1237.5 of the Penal Code requiring a statement by the defendant and a certificate of probable cause by the trial court are inapplicable, but the appeal shall not be operative unless the notice of appeal states that it is based upon such grounds." (Rule 31(d); see also Lloyd, supra, 17 Cal. 4th at p. 664.)