While most criminal cases are resolved by plea negotiations, when a criminal case is contested the decision by the trial judge is often appealed. In limited situations, the State can also appeal decisions by judges that were made before a trial commenced. These appeals are heard in the Oregon appellate court system. Virtually all criminal appeals will be heard initially by the Oregon Court of Appeals. Should a party disagree with the decision of the Oregon Court of Appeals, he or she has the right to petition for the review of that decision to the Oregon Supreme Court.
The decisions of these courts appear in writing and both the Oregon Court of Appeals and the Oregon Supreme Court publish their opinions in print and online. These courts produce media releases which summarize all their opinions and allow readers to understand the basic substance of appellate court decisions.