The Criminal Defense Law Center of
West Michigan

DUI Attorney: Skilled Defense Against DUI Charges

If you're facing drunk driving charges, Shawn Haff is here for you. He offers personalized legal defense aimed at safeguarding your rights and future. Shawn's approach is all about you—your life, your career, your peace of mind.
By fighting to lessen or dismiss your charges, he opens a path to a brighter future. Ready to take control of your situation? Contact Shawn Haff for a free strategy session. It's your first step toward turning things around.

Drunk Driving Attorney Grand Rapids MI: Understanding DUI Consequences

Facing drunk driving charges is daunting. The fear, the anxiety—it’s overwhelming, knowing one mistake could tarnish your reputation, derail your career, and shatter your personal life. It’s unjust for your future to hang in the balance over this. Without the right defense, everything you’ve worked for could be lost. 

Shawn Haff understands the stakes. He’s committed to fighting for you, to prevent a single error from defining your life. Don’t let this moment dictate your future. Reach out to Shawn, and take the first step towards reclaiming your peace of mind.

Best Drunk Driving Attorney: Proven Success in DUI Cases

Navigating the legal world requires more than just a lawyer; it demands a partner who stands by your side with the right mix of expertise, attention, and care. We offer a sophisticated defense strategy that's tailored to your unique case, ensuring you're not just another file on the desk.
Our approach prioritizes personalized attention, ensuring you feel heard, understood, and confident in the path forward. And above all, we provide peace of mind by meticulously handling the legal details, allowing you to focus on your life beyond the courtroom.

Expert Legal DefenseTailored, strategic defense to navigate through the legal system effectively.
Personalized AttentionDedicated support ensures you’re informed and confident in your legal journey.
Peace of MindHandling all legal aspects of your case, so you can focus on your life and work without the stress of legal complexities.


Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol: Legal Guidance for Your Case

If You're In Trouble

We understand how hard it is to navigate through legal challenges, where every decision feels like it carries the weight of your future. That is why we approach each case with not only a keen legal strategy but also a deep sense of empathy. We know that behind every case file is a story, a person seeking clarity and justice in a moment of uncertainty. We have helped hundreds of individuals find their way through these daunting times, offering guidance, support, and expert legal representation. Our experience and track record of success serve as your assurance that we know how to handle your case with the care and precision it deserves. With us by your side, you're not just another client; you're a partner in the journey towards a resolution that offers peace and a path forward.

Drunk Driving Defense Lawyer: Strategic Legal Representation for Your DUI Case

For legal support from the Criminal Defense Law Center of West Michigan, here's what you can do:
Contact: Reach out to the office of Shawn Haff for an initial conversation.
Consultation: Have a detailed discussion about your OWI case during a consultation.
Representation: Decide to hire Shawn Haff for legal representation in your case.
We're committed to guiding you through every step of this challenging time.

Best Domestic Violence Lawyer: Strategic Legal Action for Your Case


Best Grand Rapids, Michigan Drunk Driving Lawyer: Understanding Your Rights in a DUI Case

Facing legal challenges can bring up a host of concerns and doubts. We understand that taking the step to seek legal representation is not made lightly.
Below, we address the top five objections you might have and provide clear, reassuring answers to each. Our goal is to ensure you feel confident and informed as you make this important decision.

Top Objections

Answers to the Objections

1. Cost of services 


2. Uncertainty of outcomes


3. Fear of judgment


4. Concerns over confidentiality


5. Doubts about the necessity of legal representation


We offer competitive pricing and flexible payment options to ensure our services are accessible.

Our experienced team employs proven strategies to maximize your chances of a favorable outcome.

We provide a judgment-free environment, focusing on understanding and solving your legal issue.

Your privacy and confidentiality are paramount, and we uphold the highest standards to protect your information.

Navigating the legal system without expert guidance can put your outcome at risk. Our expertise is crucial for a fair process and outcome.

We Are Five Star Rated DUI And Drunk Driving Defense Attorneys and Lawyers In Grand Rapids, Michigan

Being stopped and put under arrest for drunk driving is an embarrassing event. The penalties are extreme and are becoming tougher by the year.

Under Michigan law, a conviction for drunk driving will hammer an individual with negative consequences that can destroy your employment opportunities, ruin your reputation, your career and other areas of your life.

If you are arrested for DUI/DWI/OWI, you probably have many questions such as: am I going to jail? Will I lose my driver’s license? Can I take my case to trial and win?

If you or someone you know is arrested for these criminal charges, the best decision you can make is finding and retaining the legal assistance of a talented criminal defense lawyer. The Criminal Defense Law Center of West Michigan is a powerful criminal defense law firm based in Grand Rapids, MI that will take the time to answer all of your questions and ease your concerns. We represent people charged with drunk driving in Grand Rapids, Michigan and all other cities and counties in the wolverine state.  We would be happy to be your driving driving defense lawyer in Grand Rapids, Michigan. 

Criminal attorney Shawn James Haff has represented clients in counties throughout West Michigan. Because of this, you can count on Shawn to use his experience to get you outstanding results on your case.  Shawn is the best DUI attorney in Grand Rapids MI. He has served throughout West Michigan. He has the skills and knowledge needed to take on local prosecutors.  Shawn knows the tactics and strategies law enforcement and prosecutors use in all these counties. Let Shawn put his experience as a DUI defense attorney to work for you!

Get A Free Case Strategy Session

Grand Rapids Drunk Driving Defense

If you’ve been arrested for drunk driving, it is important to secure an experienced and highly skilled owi defense attorney who has proven success with drunk driving cases in Michigan. With today’s advances in blood alcohol testing technologies and legislative developments, it is more difficult than ever to mount a successful criminal defense in these types of cases.

At The Criminal Defense Law Center Of West Michigan, we recognize the serious effects a DUI conviction can have on your life. Harsh consequences associated with drunk driving can negatively impact your reputation, career, and future employment opportunities. We will do everything we can to protect your rights and fight to get your charges reduced if not dropped altogether. Our Grand Rapids DUI lawyers have a reputation for success in helping individuals avoid harsh penalties and life-altering consequences. Our DUI Lawyers in Grand Rapids, MI will not rest until you get the best results possible.  Our criminal attorneys will be with you every step of the way. Do not face these serious criminal charges without a skilled DUI attorney in Grand Rapids by your side. 

How Our Grand Rapids Michigan DUI Lawyers Can Help You


If you are arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) in Grand Rapids, Michigan, our criminal defense lawyers can help you. There are two aspects to your DUI charge. The first aspect involves the suspension of your driver’s license, which will happen immediately if you are suspected of driving under the influence, whether you refuse or fail a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test. The second aspect involves actual criminal charges which can result in jail time and very hefty fines if you are convicted.

If you or someone you loved has been arrested for suspicion of drunk driving, contact our Michigan DUI lawyers today for aggressive defense representation. We will request a hearing to challenge your license suspension and will aggressively represent you in hearings with the Department of Motor Vehicles and in criminal court.

If you choose to work with us in your DUI case, you can expect the following from our OWI lawyer in Grand Rapids:

  •         Aggressive legal representation in all your hearings with the DMV and in criminal court.
  •         Bold criminal defense using educated strategies to help you avoid harsh penalties.
  •         We will keep you informed of what is happening all along the way so there are no surprises.
  •         We will be available everyday to answer your questions and address your concerns.

Hire Grand Rapids, Michigan’s Most Respected Owi Dui Law Firm

Drunk Driving Defense Lawyer Shawn Haff has successfully handled a vast amount of DUI cases in Grand Rapids, Michigan and all through out West Michigan. You can rest easy knowing you are getting a respected Lawyer who will not rest until you get the best results possible on your OWI. 

DUI, DWI, OWI And Drunk Driving Penalties In Michigan

Depending on the facts and circumstances of your case and your previous record, a drunk driving conviction can result in jail time, significant fines and costs, community service, work crew, loss of your driving privileges and probation.

A first offense OWI, DUI, drunk driving conviction could send you to jail for up to 93 days, cost you up to $1,000.00 in fines and court costs, cost you a $1,000.00 dollar driver responsibility fee for two years and your driver’s license being suspended.

A High BAC (Super Drunk Driving) conviction increases fines by $200.00, maximum possible jail time is increased to 180 days, 45 days of no driving and an additional 320 days restriction with an alcohol monitor on the vehicle. Below you can find more details about the punishments for Drunk Driving offenses in West Michigan Courtrooms. 

First Offense DUI In Michigan

  • $100 to $500 fine:
  • Up to 360 hours of community service.
  • Up to 93 days in jail.
  • Possible vehicle immobilization.
  • Driver license suspension for 30 days, followed by restrictions for 150 days.
  • Six points added to the driver record.
  • Possible ignition interlock.
  • $1,000 Driver Responsibility Fee for two consecutive years for OWI.
  • $500 Driver Responsibility Fee for two consecutive years for OWPD.


Not only is an arrest for a First Offense DUI embarrassing, but it can also cost your job, thousands of dollars in legal fees leaving you and even fear about what is what your future holds. Our drunk driving lawyers will get you the best results possible!

First Offense DUI Causing Death or Serious Injury

Criminal penalties are severe when you are arrested for a driving drunk and charged with DUI Causing Death or Serious Injury. These penalties may include substantial prison time, fines, and more. 

If convicted of drunk driving causing death (manslaughter), the punishment you may face includes up to 15 years in prison. However, if the accident resulted in an emergency or highway worker losing his or her life, you may be sentenced to up to 20 years in prison. In addition, you may face fines of between $2,500 and $10,000, vehicle immobilization and/or forfeiture, and restitution.

When serious bodily injury results in an accident directly caused by drunk driving, you may be sentenced to fines of between $1,000 and $5,000, vehicle forfeiture, and up to 5 years in prison. In either situation your driver’s license may be suspended or revoked.

Second Offense Drunk Driving In Grand Rapids, Michigan

Second DUI, OWI, drunk driving offenses carry many of the same penalties as the first offense but some of them are more severe.

Penalties for a second DUI, OWI, drunk driving offense include:

  • Mandatory jail time of at least five days and not more than one year
  • License revocation of at least one year
  • License plate confiscation
    Vehicle immobilization or forfeiture of up to six months a fine of up to $1,000
  • Driver responsibility fees of $1,000 for two years up to 90 days of community service.


I always tell my clients to start getting treatment right away when they are in front of me for a 2nd offense OWI. You are setting yourself up for potential longer jail time if you do not do this. You also are setting yourself up for repeated failure if you refuse to deal with your problem.

Who do you think will have it easier in court for sentencing? The person who admits to the court they have a problem and that they have started treatment for their problem? Or the person who shows up to court and says maybe I have a problem or worse yet, I don’t have a problem? Common sense tells us the first person will have an easier time in court!

If your drunk driving lawyer isn’t setting you up with rehab facilities, counseling and AA meetings, you need to consider retaining another attorney. I know many great AA groups in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Before you hire an attorney to represent you on any drunk driving related charge, you should ask the attorney what kind of help he can set you up with regarding treatment. I’m not just here to make money, though I enjoy making money, but I also really enjoy helping people better their lives. I have seen how counseling has done that for previous clients of mine!

Second Offense DUI Causing Serious Injury or Death In Michigan

Penalties for Second Offense DUI Causing Serious Injury or Death (any prior within seven years)

  • OWI/OWVI/OWPD/DWLS causing death/serious injury (felony)
  • DUI Causing Death Death-Up to 15 years imprisonment OR $2,500 to $10,000 fine, or both
  • Injury-Up to five years imprisonment OR $1,000 to $5,000 fine, or both
  • Emergency Responder Death-Up to 20 years imprisonment OR $2,500 to $10,000 fine, or both
  • Driver license denial/revocation for a minimum of five years
  • License plate confiscation
  • Vehicle immobilization 90 to 180 days unless the vehicle is forfeited
  • Possible vehicle forfeiture
  • $1000 Driver Responsibility Fee for two consecutive years.

To be convicted of a Second Offense DUI Causing Serious Injury or Death or serious the prosecutor must prove the following: (1) that the defendant was operating a motor vehicle, (2) that the defendant was operating a vehicle on a highway or other place open to the public or generally accessible to motor vehicles, (3) that the defendant was operating the vehicle in the county where the charges are pending, (4) the Defendant was intoxicated, and (5) death or serious impairment of a victim. DUI Causing Death is a very serious felony! Call us today to talk about your case at 616-438-6719. Our DUI Causing Death defense lawyers won’t judge you. Our DUI Causing death defense lawyers will be with you every step of the way.

According to Section 257.625 of the Michigan Vehicle Code, you may be found guilty of a felony if your ability to drive was impaired due to consuming alcohol, and an individual suffers serious injury or impairment of a body function because of it. It is essential to obtain the legal guidance of a skilled DUI Causing Serious Injury Lawyer!  Having the support and representation of a skilled West Michigan DUI Causing Serious Injury Lawyer who is capable of building a strong and aggressive defense.

The criminal penalties individuals face if convicted of DUI causing serious bodily injury are severe in themselves; however your life will be affected in other ways, including possible loss of your freedom and damage to your career and reputation. Our DUI Causing Death or Serious Injury defense lawyers won’t judge you. Our DUI Causing Death Or Serious Injury defense lawyers will walk with you every step of the way. If you are facing criminal charges related to drunk driving or DUI in Grand Rapids, Michigan please call Shawn right away at 616-438-6719. 

Third Offense DUI in Grand Rapids, Michigan

If you already have at least two DUIs on your record, a third offense DUI Drunk Driving charge is a felony punishable by harsh sanctions that include:

You will be facing up to five years in prison! You will be facing probation. You will be facing fines and costs that will be anywhere from $500 to $5,000.  You will face driver’s license revocation for at least one year. There could be vehicle forfeiture or immobilization for one to three years. You will face denial of vehicle registration. Confiscation of your license plate and community service of 60 to 180 days.

Top Drunk Driving and DUI Lawyer in Michigan

The permitted blood alcohol content (BAC) limit in Michigan for people on the roadways is .08%. Anyone who gets caught with a BAC higher than this limit will be charged with drunk driving.  Distinguished DUI attorneys in Grand Rapids like Shawn Haff provide you with information and knowledge while he represents you on your case. . A drunk driver defense lawyer Shawn Haff will advocate for you and not rest until you get the best result possible on your case.  

Michigan is a zero tolerance state. This means that if the a driver on the roadway in the Wolverine state has a BAC above .02 they will face drunk driving charges.  Quality drunk driving lawyers in Grand Rapids Mi will help you by looking out for your best interests and making sure you can have a secure future by protecting your ability to drive legally in Michigan. 

The best owi lawyer in West Michigan will always navigate you through the complext judicial system. Shawn will take on the harshes judges in West  Michigan for you! Shawn will deal with tough prosecutors in all local courtrooms. Shawn will fight to protect your driver’s license. Because of these reasons, it is essential essential that you call a DUI attorney in Grand Rapids, MI right now. 

Elements of of Operating While Intoxicated (DUI, OWI or OWVI):

In order to understand how to challenge your charge of operating while under the influence your attorney must first how a profound understand the elements a prosecutor must prove to get a drunk driving conviction in Michigan. These elements are:

  1. Operating a motor vehicle,
  2. On a highway or other place open to the general public, or generally accessible to motor vehicles,
  3. In the county of __________, city of _____________,
  4. While under the influence of alcohol and/or with an unlawful bodily alcohol level of .08 grams or more.

Many people feel these elements are easy to understand, the reality of the law is there is more to this law than meets the eye. Because this law is not clear, the next section below will  discuss the legal definitions of elements. 

Under Michigan law operating is defined as “being in actual physical control of a vehicle.” MCL 257.35A It does not matter if the person is licensed to operate the vehicle. The reason for this is because Michigan law defines an operator as “a person, other than a chauffeur, who operates a motor vehicle or automated motor vehicle upon a highway or street. MCL 257.36. MCL 257.625(1) adds that operating a vehicle in a “place open to the general public or generally accessible to motor vehicles, including an area designated for the parking of vehicles…” while under the influence of alcohol is prohibited under Michigan law.

The Michigan Supreme Court in gives us a clear understanding of what constitutes operating a vehicle in People v Wood, 450 Mich 399, 538 NW2d 351 (1995). A person is operating a vehicle when they are “using a motor vehicle as a motor vehicle has put the vehicle in motion, or in a position posing a significant risk of causing a collision, such a person continues to operate it until the vehicle is returned to a position posing no such risk.” Id. at 404-405.

Legal Definition of a Motor Vehicle:

The definition for a motor vehicle is located at MCL 257.79.  Any device that can move a person along a roadway, unless it is exclusively moved by human power. This means you can be charged for drunk driving in a go-cart, dune buggies or a snowmobile.

Legal Definition of Operating on a Highway or Place Open to the Public:

Parking lots, trailer park property, Meijer parking lots, property owned by a mall are areas that are “Open to the general public and accessible to motor vehicles.” If you are caught my law enforcement driving a vehicle you will be charged with drunk driving.   

Legal Definition of Under the Influence.

The drunk driving statue in Michigan was changed so there are two ways a person can be charged for drunk driving, DUI, OWI.

(1) Driving while “under the influence” [that the consumption of alcohol has caused a material and substantial effect on the Defendant’s ability to operate the vehicle]; or

(2) The Defendant operated a vehicle with an unlawful BAC of .08 or .17 or higher.

The under the influence way focuses on how alcohol or a controlled substance impacts a driver. The second way only requires that a prosecuting attorney only needs to show there was an accurate measure of the defendant’s blood alcohol content.

Drunk Driving Grand Rapids Michigan

DUI Arrests in Grand Rapids

GR is the second biggest city in Michigan and the Grand River runs through it! The Grand Rapids Police Department used to have around 300 uniformed personnel. This number has dropped after budget cuts because of Covid-19. The GR police department takes around 150,000 calls each year.  A good chunk of those calls deal with DUI/ OWI.   The population of Grand Rapids is around one million people. The Kent County Sheriff’s Department also serves the area around Grand Rapids.  

The top court in Michigan declared that sobriety checkpoints violate the state constitution. The case where this ruling was issued is Michigan Dept. of State Police v. Sitz.  Michigan Supreme court held that it violated the Fourth Amendment. This doesn’t stop these two police departments from catching inebriated drivers all year. They are particularly out in force looking for drunk drivers during local events and holidays. 

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, Michigan has two percent of its driver’s reported that they were driving after they had drank too much within a 30 day period. The Wolverine state has nearly seven-million people who can licensed to drive. By doing some basic math, there were over 140,000 drunk and impaired drivers on the road in Michigan during the last 30 days. 

Prosecutors in Kent County and City attorneys in Grand Rapids take charges that deal with alcohol and driving very seriously. No matter how serious and bad the evidence is against you, five-star rated attorney Shawn Haff can find a way to mitigate the damages his clients are facing from their OWI charges.  When you need the best Grand Rapids OWI attorney, call Shawn Haff now!

Hidden Costs Of A Drunk Driving In Michigan

Most people associate monetary fines and possible jail time as the costs of Michigan drunk driving conviction. This costs also apply to anyone picking up a DUI in Grand Rapids, MI or any other major city or town in the wolverine state. While these may be the most common costs related to a DUI, you should be aware of many other costs.  Our Grand Rapids DUI defense attorney is here for you if you need help with your OWI case. Retain the best OWI defense Lawyer in Grand Rapids to help you get the best results possible. 

Here’s a look at five hidden costs of a DUI conviction:

1. Employment: A DUI may go on your criminal record. If your job requires that you maintain a clean driving record or have a valid driver’s license, you could potentially lose your job or miss out on a new job opportunity. Another factor is all the time away from work when you must attend your mandatory appearance court dates.

2. Mandatory Jail: Any conviction for DUI carries mandatory jail time. For a first offense, it is either 24 or 48 consecutive hours (or 15 or 30 days of electronic home monitoring). The jail time and house arrest goes up exponentially on second or subsequent convictions for driving under the influence.

3. Auto Insurance: Any increased auto insurance premiums due to drunk driving can have a much longer-lasting effect than a one-time monetary fine. A conviction for DUI carries the requirement that you carry high risk (SR-22) insurance.

4. Driving Record: A DUI conviction will go on your driving record and will trigger a driver’s license suspension or revocation.

How Much Does A DUI And Drunk Driving Lawyer Cost?

The DUI fees for hiring an attorney vary considerably. We have found that first offense OUIL/DUI?OWI range from $1,000.00 to as high as $20,000. If your case deals with OWI causing serious injury or death, fees can go as high as $80,000.

Why do DUI fees vary so much? The answer comes down to basically two things:

1. The amount of time a lawyer plans on spending to defend the case.
2. The rate the lawyer charges for an hourly rate.

Some lawyers who charge at the low-end of the DUI fees range will probably expect their client to plead guilty at the first opportunity in court. The reason for this is because some of the lawyers may not gather a police report, spend little time in preparation and not do any investigation on their own.  In some of these cases, the lawyers do not have a lot of experience in handling DUI cases and ergo their billing rates are lower. DUI fees for lawyers who are skilled in handling dui cases and who have advanced training and experience in these types of cases are going to bill much higher dui fees.

At The Criminal Defense Law Center of West Michigan, we use different billing rates.  The rates are based on the expertise of the lawyer and how many cases the lawyer you want to work with has handled over the years.

Lawyers in Michigan may not charge a contingency fee in criminal cases. So a lawyer may use a flat fee or bill by the hour if you are charged with DUI in Grand Rapids, Michigan. 

We use only flat fees. With over three decades of experience and practice,  we have found that our clients like dui fees on a flat fee basis. We charge a clients a flat fee because they know exactly how much the cost will be for us to handle the whole case. We promise there will be no surprise bills.

According to the rules of professional conduct in Michigan, the following factors may be considered when concluding the reasonableness of the OWI fee:

  1. the time and labor required,
  2. How difficult the case will be and the skill required to provide legal service properly.
  3. will other employment be precluded because the lawyer took this case.
  4. the experience, reputation, and ability of the lawyer or lawyers performing the services.
If you do not retain the best DUI lawyer in Grand Rapids to represent you, these costs could be much, much higher. 

Operating with a High Blood Alcohol Content In Michigan

Also known as “super drunk,” the prosecutor needs to establish that your blood alcohol content (BAC) was 0.17, which is more than twice the “legal limit” of 0.08. This provision was added in 2010, and it comes with harsher punishment.

Here are the consequences for operating with a high BAC:

  • It’s a misdemeanor conviction on your record
  • Up to 180 days in jail
  • Up to 360 hours of community service
  • Fines up to $700
  • Several hundred dollars in court costs
  • A 45-day hard suspension, followed by a restricted license for 1 year, during which time you must have an ignition interlock device installed on your car
  • 6 points on your driver’s license.


As mentioned earlier, you may face penalties that are double those of a regular DUI conviction if charged with a Super Drunk offense. The penalties if convicted for having a BAC of .17% or above include:

  • Up to 180 days in jail
  • Fines and court costs of between $200 and $700
  • 45 days driver’s license suspension followed by 320 days of restricted driving
  • Required installation of ignition interlock device to remain throughout restricted driving period
  • Possible court order to attend alcohol treatment for a minimum of one year
  • Possible 360 hours of community service

DUI Defense Is NOT Straightforward in Grand Rapids

While DUI cases might seem straightforward, they are not for several reasons.

  1. Drunk driving cases can cause traffic accidents that destroy lives and property.
  2. There are several factors a DUI, OWI, Drunk Driving attorney will consider when evaluating your case.
    1. First, did the officer have reasonable suspicion to stop you? An example of reasonable suspicion would be the officer observing a vehicle speeding or running a stop sign.
    2. Did the officer have probable cause to start a DUI investigation? An officer would have probable cause to start a DUI investigation if he watched a vehicle go through a stop sign and the driver had bloodshot eyes and admitted to drinking vodka a few hours earlier.

If you were required to perform field sobriety tests, there are many questions which can be asked of the arresting officer, for example:

  1. Were they justified in the first place, properly explained and properly assessed?
  2. Was the officer correctly trained to administer and evaluate the test results for DUI, OWI, and Drunk Driving sobriety tests? Was there probable cause to arrest you for DUI, OWI, and Drunk Driving?
  3. If you took a blood-alcohol test at the police station, were the tests properly conducted on machines properly maintained by officers properly trained?
  4. Where the results accurate and reliable?
  5. Regardless of all the tests and reports, can the prosecutor prove that you violated each element of DUI law beyond a reasonable doubt? 

In cases where a person is pulled over for a OWI or drunk driving stop,  we find that arrests are often based on evidence that is very subjective.  Attorney Shawn Haff and his firm investigates all of the relevant facts. We will do interviews with witnessess  to learn if errors were down by the police officer during the field sobriety test. We will examine if a breathalyzer sample was triggered by unwarranted law enforcement action. If we find there was not grounds for a prper stop we will get your case tossed. We will search and if we find that the authorities cannot demonstrate that probable cause was present at the time of the arrest, we will again fight to have the charges dropped. If a local prosecutor decides to have items presented in court that were taken unlawfully or statements that you made without a Miranda warning, we’ll make sure that evidence is excluded. 

A Law Firm That Handles Civil Cases Caused By Drunk Driving Crashes

Shawn’s law firm can defend motorists who are facing drunk driving charges that cause injury and lead to civil lawsuits. If a person suffers a severe injury from a DUI accident, the amount of money a settlement or verdict can get is massive. Because of this, a person in this situation should always hire a lawyer who knows how to look at the data and determine how much a claim might be worth. A talented lawyer might be able to achieve a very favorable outcome where no money will be paid to the person claiming injury from an OWI accident. 

A Winning DUI Defense Even If You Failed a Sobriety Test

If you or someone you love has been arrested for DUI charges after failing a sobriety test, you may feel like you have no chance of avoiding a conviction. But that is not entirely true. At The Criminal Defense Law Center of West Michigan, we have success in challenging these types of cases even when our clients have failed a BAC test. We will unturn every shred of evidence and will find any violations of your constitutional rights which can turn your entire case around. We use cutting edge strategies and think outside the box when it comes to building solid criminal defense claims and we know we can help you.

City of East Grand Rapids v. Vanderhart

In many drunk driving cases, challenges to a Sobriety Test will come down to being reasonable. 

For instance, in the case of City of East Grand Rapids v. Vanderhart, defendant challenged a DUI based on a traffic stop initiated due to a taillight that was not working properly. The majority opinion in by the Michigan Court of Appeals held such a stop could be lawful, at least as it pertained to the totality of circumstances in that particular case. The Police Officer passed defendant’s vehicle and noticed that one taillight was completely out.

When the officer’s car caught up to the vehicle being driven by the defendant, the officer noticed the taillight wasn’t out, it was only significantly dimmer than the other. Based on this, officer stopped defendant, who was deemed by officer to be impaired. His BAC was measured at 0.14. Defense attorneys sought to suppress all evidence gleaned from the stop, arguing the officer lacked reasonable suspicion because his taillights were visible from 500 feet, and thus he had not violated Michigan Vehicle Code.

The jurors found defendant guilty, but then trial court judge granted defense motion to set aside the verdict.

On appeal, the circuit court vacated the trial court’s ruling and reinstated the verdict. The court held the officer’s belief he could stop defendant to inspect the vehicle on the basis of a dim headlight was reasonable per the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2014 decision in Heien v. North Carolina. Defendant appealed to the Michigan Court of Appeals. This court also affirmed the jury’s conviction.

However, dissenting opinion held that the majority opinion set a precedent for its own standard of “unsafe” illumination of a light. The dissent argued this should have been set by the legislative branch, not the court. That leaves some room to challenge future cases brought on the same basis, particularly considering the matter hasn’t been settled by the state supreme court.

Getting Your License Back After a Drunk Driving Conviction

If your driver’s license has been suspended due to a drunk driving conviction, you will be required to fulfill the following:

  • Prove sobriety for 12 months
  • Have proof of membership in a recovery program
  • Provide three people willing to vouch for your sobriety
  • Demonstrate that you have received alcohol abuse rehabilitation counseling

Punishment For Refusal Of Chemical Test In Michigan

The peace officer shall immediately forward a written report to the Secretary of State; the driver must request, within 14 days, a hearing before the Secretary of State or the penalties will be imposed by default. MCL 257.625d(2), 257.625f(1).

The state has to prove the following facts to establish as a fact in court that a driver refused a chemical test:

  1. The police officer has grounds to reasonably believe the driver had committed the offense of drunk drivign or driving under the influence of drugs. 
  2. The driver was indeed arrested for the offense of drunk driving. 
  3. The driver was verbally told by the police officer of their rights that are listed in MCL 257.625a(6).
  4. The refusal by the driver was unreasonable. 

The officer or the person accused of a chemical refusal can have an attorney represent the them.  The peace officer, after the arrest for drunk driving is made and after there is a chemical refusal shall send a written report to the Secretary of State. Once the driver is given notice of the Secretary of State has this notice, the driver must within 14 days, ask for a hearing before the Secretary of State or a default will be entered which will cause the driver to suffer the penalties found in MCL 257.625d(2), 257.625f(1).

Once this has been established as a legal fact, The Secretary of State in Michigan must suspend the driver’s license of the person for seven years when it is a first offense. If this is a second offense, the driver will have their license suspended for two years. 

If there is a violation of the driver’s constitutional rights at the federal of state level, the suspension shall be set aside. This suspension can also be set aside if the Secretary of State did not have statutory authority and if the Circuit Court finds this suspension was capricious and arbitrary. 

Michigan's Implied Consent Law

Under Michigan Law, any driver is “presumed” to have given their consent to a chemical test. This consent applies to a test of your urine, breath or blood. This consent is done for the purpose of determining how high the driver’s BAC is or if there is presence of a controlled substance or both.  MCL 257.625c

If the driver is arrested under a local law or Ordinance, the law must be very similar to the corresponding state law. If a person has diabetes, their consent is not “presumed.” It is not “presumed” that a person who is under a medical condition that requires they use an anticoagulant.  

Do You Really Need a Lawyer for a Drunk Driving?

Yes! If you want to get a lower charge or believe you are innocent you need an experienced criminal defense lawyer like Shawn Haff on your side. Shawn’s past clients feel he is the best DUI, Drunk Driving defense lawyer in Grand Rapids! As you have read about above, the penalties for any OWI conviction are harsh!         

Drunk Driving Defense Lawyer Near Me

If you’ve been arrested for the suspicion of drunk driving, it is important to hire a criminal defense attorney who understands the laws specific to your state. Our defense lawyers help people in Grand Rapids, Michigan and beyond with cases involving:

  •         First DUI offense
  •         Second, third or subsequent drunk driving arrests and charges
  •         Underage DUI charges
  •         Felony DUI charges
  •         DUI cases involving accidents and injuries
  •         DUI involving death

To schedule a consultation with an experienced DUI defense lawyer, contact us today. 

Do You Get A Public Defender For DUI And Drunk Driving Charges in Grand Rapids, Michigan?

In many cases, a person will not be given a public defender. If you are facing a felony OWI charge, you will be given a court appointed attorney. Can you really afford to risk your liberty and future with a court appointed attorney who is swamped with work?  If you want a number one rated attorney on your side call Shawn now at 616-438-6719. Why risk your future with a Grand Rapids, MI or Kent County public defender? Hire The Best Grand Rapids, Michigan Drunk Driving Defense Lawyer today!

One of the Best, Well Known Drunk Driving Lawyers in Michigan

If legal system is very unforgiving when it comes to DUI and OWI cases. A drunk driving charge impacts your freedom but it also negatively impacts your ability to drive in the future.  Because of this, you need the best OWI lawyer who will fight to defend your liberty and your ability to drive. both of these rights. This is why you need to retain Attorney Shawn Haff as your DUI attorney in Grand Rapids, MI.

With many years of handling drunk driving charges under his belt, Shawn’s clients regularly avoid jail time and lesser charges. Widely considered a five-star DUI lawyer in Grand Rapids, Shawn Haff will help you lessen the stress created by a DUI charge.

If you are facing a DUI charge, know that you have to hire a great drunk driving lawyer. Also know that Shawn is an OWI lawyer that will charge you a fair price for his services. Call Shawn today at 616-438-6719. 

Hire Grand Rapids, Michigan’s Most Respected DUI OWI Law Firm

As a Drunk Driving Attorney in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Shawn Haff will make sure your rights are protected and guide you through every step of the criminal proceeding process. As a respect DUI attorney in Grand Rapids, MI, Shawn Haff knows the  judges and the proescutors. He knows how to get his clients great results. 

Top DUI and Drunk Driving Lawyer in Michigan

Attorney Shawn James Haff knows how to get his clients results!

As a Drunk Driving defense lawyer who has helped his clients face numerous dui charges in Grand Rapids, Shawn has the experience, dedication and drive to get his clients the best results possible. Do not face OWI charges alone! That would be a huge mistake. Call Shawn now at 616-438-6719 and let him guide you to the pathway that will get you the best results possible when you are facing DUI charges. Call Shawn Now!

 Our Grand Rapids DUI defense attorney  will fight for you and not rest until you get the best result possible. 

We also have the best domestic violence lawyer to defend you against this serious criminal charge in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Shawn is dedicated to protecting your rights and future.  Our expert Michigan criminal sexual conduct lawyer helps his clients get the best results possible when your liberty is at stake. 

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