Appeals are motions, or formal requests, that ask a higher court to review and overturn a decision made by a lower court or an administrative body. In the context of criminal law, for example, a person who is convicted of a crime may ask an appellate court to overturn the conviction and/or to change the sentence imposed by the lower court. For an administrative example, in Michigan a person who is denied restoration of his or her driver’s license after a hearing by the Driver License Appeal Division (DLAD) may appeal to have that denial reviewed by a state court.

Various laws set strict limits on the time period during which a person may file an appeal. By missing the deadline, a person may permanently lose the opportunity to appeal. In addition, the powers of a court of appeals are limited: the judges may only consider the “record” (or the evidence) properly presented to the court below, and they may only consider “grounds” (or reasons) for appeal that were properly raised at the initial trial.

If you are considering appealing a conviction, a sentence, or an administrative decision in Michigan, you should discuss your case with an experienced Michigan attorney. In addition, an effective criminal defense attorney may appeal various decisions made by a judge before or during trial—such as the decision to allow a prosecutor to present a defendant’s confession to the jury, or a decision to admit particular evidence without which the prosecution would be unable to prove its case.

Thus, whether you are facing an investigation, have been charged with an offense, or have been convicted, you could benefit from consulting with an attorney who understands and is ready to use the appeals process. You will need an attorney who understands the time limits imposed by law and can write clearly and convincingly. Appeals courts require (and generally base their decisions on) “briefs,” which are legal documents that must detail the facts of the case at issue, list the alleged errors that the court should focus on, and support all arguments with citations to laws and relevant decisions in prior cases. Mr. Leydorf’s legal writing has been commended on several occasions by judges across Michigan.

Attorney Nicholas Leydorf has achieved outstanding results on behalf of clients facing a variety of charges in more than 50 counties across Michigan. Contact The Leydorf Law Firm today, by calling (517) 388-6800 or emailing