Franklin Misdemeanor Defense Attorneys
From the Smallest Charges to the Largest, We Represent You
You’ve been accused of a misdemeanor, and it’s a frightening reality. What happens now? What does the future hold? When you’re accused of a crime, it’s easy to feel lost and alone.
Haddad Law Firm is here to help. We have years of experience in misdemeanor defense. We hold the right to a defense in the highest regard, and we will fight to help you overcome this troubling time.
What Is a Misdemeanor?
In the U.S. criminal justice system, a misdemeanor is the second most severe form of crime, just under a felony. It is usually punishable by jail time not to exceed one year and/ or a fine. Fortunately, misdemeanors don’t normally come with long stretches of incarceration or time spent in prison. Only “high court misdemeanors” carry a prison sentence in Michigan.
There are three levels of misdemeanor in the state. The lowest level is punishable by fines up to $500 and jail time of up to 90/93 days. Examples of a 93-day misdemeanor would be theft of inexpensive property ($200 or less) or simple assault and battery.
For the second tier, the fines can go as high as $2,000, and jail time may last up to a year. Theft of property valued between $200 and $1,000 or illegally firing a gun can be a one-year misdemeanor.
The highest level of misdemeanor is a high court misdemeanor. The system treats it as a “two-year felony,” but it is still classified as a misdemeanor. High court misdemeanors include more serious offenses like drug possession, indecent exposure, and negligent vehicular homicide. If convicted, the defendant can face up to two years in prison.
How to Plea
What should someone expect once a misdemeanor arrest goes to trial? The first step is the district court arraignment. This is where the defendant is brought before the court and makes a plea of guilty, not guilty, or no contest. “No contest” means that the defendant is not going to argue their innocence or admit guilt. They are not going to “contest,” or challenge, the charges against them.
Don’t assume that any particular plea will yield an expected result. “No contest” could still be harshly sentenced, and so could a guilty plea. A “not guilty” plea doesn’t automatically mean that the defendant will have the option to make bail. A competent misdemeanor lawyer can help you navigate the proper courtroom plea given your circumstances.
After the arraignment is the Pretrial which is the next step in the process. This is where both sides try to gather their evidence and create their arguments. The evidence will be offered and validated by both sides and the court, and the arrest will be reviewed to make sure it was lawful . Both sides will likely look for solutions that can resolve the matter short of having a trial on the merits. If an resolution negotiated, then a plea will occur followed by a same day sentencing or in some cases a sentencing on another day. Our legal team is very familiar with this process, and we can help build a strong defense for our clients.
When pretrial reaches no solutions, it’s time to go to trial. The prosecution and defense will make their arguments, present their evidence, and try to convince the court or Jury that they are right. Depending on the severity of the misdemeanor, the lawyers could be arguing before a jury or only a judge. Either way, Haddad Law Firm has the skill to present a strong defense.
When a defendant pleads or is found guilty, the final step is sentencing. This is where the judge rules on the punishment for the crime. Our team can bargain for a fair sentencing if the court finds a defendant guilty. Many times the prosecution or probation are recommending jail time, but with the strong advocates at the Haddad Law Firm, we have overcome those recommendations and have avoided jail all together.
If the court has made an error, our team is familiar with the appeals process. We can argue to have the case brought to a higher court and work toward a truly just outcome.
A Michigan Misdemeanor Law Firm that Fights for You
Haddad Law Firm is equipped to take on your misdemeanor case. Whatever your reason for being in court, we believe in your right to representation. We can argue your case and aggressively fight for a fair solution at trial.
We will fight for justice in your misdemeanor trial. Call (248) 633-8500 for a free, no-risk consultation, or contact us online . You deserve your day in court, and we want to be there for you.