Appellate Law


The appellate lawyers and litigators at Smith Haughey are advocates and partners throughout the entire appeal process. We draw upon the comprehensive legal experience of over 60 attorneys in offices spanning the state of Michigan. Smith Haughey’s attorneys guide clients through the complicated legal and policy issues that surround appellate litigation and have successfully represented clients before state and federal courts and the United States Supreme Court.

The appellate procedure is governed by its own unique set of written and unwritten practices. It is relatively rule-bound, and is also strewn with pitfalls for the unwary or inexperienced.

The appellate law and litigation attorneys at Smith Haughey devote themselves daily to navigating state and federal appellate procedures — expertly and efficiently.

As dedicated appellate lawyers, our expertise is not limited to procedure. It involves a style of advocacy as well. We have learned through many years of experience how best to communicate with the appellate bench in both our written work and oral presentations. We know that judges and justices, court commissioners, and court research staff want a concise written argument.

While many believe that briefing is the decisive factor in appeals, one should not minimize the importance of oral argument. Oral argument should be a dialogue with the judges, not a fully scripted and laboriously offered presentation. Good appellate lawyers know that minds can be changed, and they know how to probe the panel for their concerns.

All of our appellate attorneys have handled cases of great legal significance. Each are frequently retained as special appellate counsel by other attorneys and law firms seeking the most skilled representation for their clients. We have years of experience handling appeals in state and federal appellate courts, and we are admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court. We stay abreast of developments in case law and appellate procedure.