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Ellen K. Michaels

Criminal defense Attorney at Detroit, MI

4.7   36 reviews

also known as Ellen K. Michaels and Associates PLLC, E. Michaels Law

Free consultation Virtual consultation available
Free consultation Virtual consultation available
  • Licensed for 19 years
    State MI
    Acquired 2005
    Active in Good Standing No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Ellen

Learn Ellen’s areas of practice.

Practice areas
  1. Criminal defense
    Ellen Michaels is a smart, results oriented attorney who knows that every client’s case is unique.

    32 years, 1,500 cases

  2. White collar crime

    32 years, 125 cases

  3. Sex crime

    32 years, 150 cases

  4. Violent crime

    32 years, 200 cases


Ellen Michaels is an experienced attorney with a stellar education from some of the country’s top schools. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of Michigan in 1986, and she went on to earn her Juris Doctor from Northwestern University School of Law in 1990. She has been practicing law for several decades.

After graduating from law school, Ellen Michaels spent time working as a Public Defender, which gave her exposure to and experience with a multitude of crimes. During this time, she was in the courtroom all day, every day. Because of these experiences, Ellen Michaels knows the courtroom inside and out, and she was also able to develop deep relationships with all of the different courts, which helps her to better serve her clients today.

Ellen is a passionate sports enthusiast, player and coach.  She has played softball for over 15 years.  She is retired from the Detroit Dark Angels; semi-pro football team.  Ellen has played with the Detroit Tigers Fantasy Camp as a second baseman and catcher.  She is known as AD Ellen in her role as Athletic Director and life long coach. 

"Just the way I fight to win on the field, I fight to win in the courtroom.  I don't let up." Ellen Michaels


Client's Choice 2018,2017,2015
Client's Choice
2018 2017 2015

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Ellen K. Michaels & Associates PLLC.
Ellen K. Michaels and Associates, PLLC
1668 S Telegraph Rd
Bloomfield Hills, MI, 48302
Ellen K. Michaels & Associates PLLC.
317 South Division Street
Suite 40
Ann Arbor, MI, 48104
Ellen K. Michaels & Associates PLLC.
4301 Orchard Lake Road
Suite 180-233
West Bloomfield, MI, 48323
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4.7 / 5.0
  36 customer reviews
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Client's Choice 2018
Client's Choice
Client's Choice is an Avvo award granted to attorneys with a significant number of client reviews over 4 stars in a given year.
Posted by Joseph A. | September 5, 2019
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Professional and Diligent
I hired Ms. Michaels to represent me in a case that was serious with 3 felony charges. If I was found guilty I would spend up to 20 years in prison. I found her through this website and the referral of two friends who had favorable comments and miraculously did not spend any time in prison. Ms. Michaels thoroughly reviewed my case with me and inquired on all the details. She then outlined a legal strategy and what her steps would be in working with the courts, Judge and news. She did an amazing job of selecting a jury. I was blown away by her insight and people skills. Through this whole process Ms. Michaels was reviewing with me talking to people behind the scenes and during trial she was focused and fearless. If not for her skills and demeanor I would be in prison and without my family. She saved my life.
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Posted by Robbie | July 4, 2019
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Ms Ellen review
I was in jail 2 months with a high bond on 10 felony counts including attempt murder. I retained Ms Michael for a reasonable retainer fee and within two weeks I was out on bond. She immediately got to work and prepared for trial and i was aquiitted of all charges
Posted by anonymous | June 23, 2020
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Forever Grateful
Ellen personally called me back within 30 minutes of me leaving a message. She was professional, knowledgeable and accomplished my miracle. I called and texted her several times, she always either picked up, texted back or called me back within a short period of time. I had a fraud conviction and received 1 yr probation and the case will be dismissed after that time.
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Posted by Tressa | March 3, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Amazing Person
Ms.Ellen is amazing lawyer i truly appreciate her i was facing two years with a felony conviction she got my whole case dismissed i truly love her she very professional i would recommend her to everyone who needs a lawyer GREAT JOB Ms.Ellen
Posted by Christine | March 14, 2019
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
The best
Ellen really cares about her clients she is a great attorney. She is very passionate in getting you back on the right side of the law. Ellen communicates with you through your whole process. And she works diligently on helping her clients. I’m very grateful to have chosen Ellen to represent me and I am very happy with the ending results
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Posted by Terry | February 25, 2019
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
The Best Ever
Mrs. Michaels is very efficient, helpful, smart and reliable. She is reasonable with her prices. She work pretty fast and super hard for me. I recommend Mrs. Michaels for any criminal charges you may have. I have a lawyer for life! Thank you Mrs. Michaels
Posted by Cynthia | December 19, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Heaven Sent
My significant other told me of someone visiting him while detained at Wayne Co. jail so I reached out to her. I cannot tell you the time she initially put in without any retainer and the personal level of teaching and making sure I understood the process. After being mishandled and not getting anywhere with the public defender, consulting with Ellen was a breath of fresh air. It has been good working with her thus far on his current charges.
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Posted by Jasmine | October 25, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Ms. Michaels is the best!!
I am so happy I chosen her to be my lawyer. Ms. Michaels was very knowledgeable, friendly, and patient with me as I asked her so many questions lol. She replied promptly with my calls or texts with any questions or concerns that I had. She allowed me to make a payment plan that was convenient for both me and her. With her by my side I was able to walk away with no conviction on my record which was my main concern to keep my current job or any job in the near future. I am grateful that I met you Ms. Michaels. Thank you for everything!!
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Posted by anonymous | July 13, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Absolutely amazing
My criminal record showed items that were not correct. She went and corrected everything Because she believed in me when no one else did. I would recommend her to anyone for anything she took the time to look into it
Posted by Garrett | July 11, 2018
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
She is amazing! She's very intelligent and knows exactly what's shes doing. Never have I had an attorney like her that was so kind and willing to go the extra mile for me. I would recommend her to anyone!
Posted by Samantha | June 16, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
No Bullcrap
I consulted with Ellen about an Assault and Battery charge that I was facing after reading reviews on Avvo, and I’m so glad that I did. She got back with me quickly, and answered all of my questions to the best of her ability. I was really scared, because I had never gotten into trouble with the law before and she was very reassuring and set me at ease. After meeting at her office and speaking with her more I knew I wanted to hire her! She was very personable and knew what information she was looking for to help me with my case. One amazing thing about Ellen is that she is extremely reasonable about payment options. She gave me a flat rate, no extra money for this or that if certain things would happen like some other lawyers, and let me make payments on the remaining balance. I truly wouldn’t have been able to hire a lawyer otherwise. She heard all aspects of the situation at hand and gave me honest, no bullcrap feedback. Which I really appreciated because it’s hard to find someone who can be extremely reassuring, but extremely realistic at the same time. We ended up having to go to trial in my case and every court date she showed up with bells on and fought hard. She took no crap from the prosecutor. She prepared me for pretty much any possible outcome, didn’t get my hopes up, but remained optimistic through out the entire process. I was found innocent and within my rights to protect myself, and didn’t even have to testify in my own trial hearing because she is that good. Not to mention she served a PPO for me, went out of her to go over my case in person and even bought me coffee. I am so happy I trusted her with my case. She’s truly worth every penny, and then some.
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Posted by Jeff | May 31, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Total Professional
We hired Ellen for assistance with a traffic matter for my teenage son. She was fantastic to work with! Very easy to get in touch with at all times and obviously very knowledgeable about the process. She undoubtedly saved me thousands of dollars in increased insurance premiums. Highly recommend!
Response from Ellen Michaels June 2, 2018
I’m so glad we came away with a great outcome!
Posted by anonymous | December 29, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Beyond Satisfied
Attorney Ellen Michaels did for me exactly what she said she would fight for, and successfully dismissed my open intoxicants case. Her enthusiasm and confidence made me feel comfortable also reassuring I picked the right attorney for the job! I would highly recommend!!
Posted by Matthew | December 12, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Great Lawyer
Ellen Michaels successfully got me removed off of the Sex Offender Registry. Played a big part and in changing my life and helping me move forward. I would recommend her to anyone, she makes sure she gets the job done.
Posted by Ashley | December 7, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Ellen Michaels Defense Attorney
I hired Ellen Michaels to represent me after I was charged with retail fraud 3 in Livonia. She was wonderful to work with, she understood my financial situation and worked with me even after others would not. She is genuinely caring and she has one of the most reassuring personalities of anyone that I have met. I was given 9 months of probation and 6 days of work program and nothing on my record. I was so fortunate to have met her.
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Posted by Nancy | December 4, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Beyond Grateful
Ellen represented my daughter when she received an MIP. She not only fought for a full dismissal, which she was able to get, but she listened to and supported my daughter throughout the process. We were so thankful for this as we live 2000 miles away and were unable to join the proceedings in person. She treated our daughter like her own, and we can not recommend her highly enough. Kind and smart! A great combo.
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Posted by Caroline | November 19, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Wonderful Attorney
Ms. Michaels truly knows the law and goes above and beyond for her clients. She fights incredibly hard for her clients in order to get the best possibly outcomes. I have referred people to her who have also been incredibly content with her work. She is extremely attentive to her clients and there through every step of the legal process. She answered all my calls, texts and emails promptly. She also answered all questions I had thoroughly and ensured I understood the legal process. Ms. Michaels is an incredible attorney and I would use her again and recommend her to anyone in need of an attorney.
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Response from Ellen Michaels November 20, 2017
Thank you for allowing me the privilege of representing you. I very much appreciate your thoughtful review. Ellen
Posted by Julie | October 24, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Amazing Attorney
Ms. Michaels went above and beyond what was necessary! She is unbelievably smart, dedicated and caring. Ms. Michaels knows the law, fights really hard for her clients and truly cares about them. I have used her myself and have referred many people to her; everyone has only positive things to say about her. She returns calls promptly, takes the time to explain everything involved in the case and the options available. Ms. Michaels is unbelievably compassionate and yet very tough in court. I would highly recommend her to anyone looking for a great attorney!!!
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Posted by Jon | October 23, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Smart and Tough
Ms. Michaels fought for me every step of the way. She was smart and tough. I was so grateful to have her fighting for me. I was accused of Domestic Violence and it was all lies. Ms. Michaels believed in me. She got my case dismissed because she knew the law and knew my rights. I highly recommend Ellen Michaels.
Posted by Harold | October 19, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
As Good as They Get
We retained Ms. Michaels to help our daughter at the University of Michigan. She was charged with several misdemeanors. Since we live far away it was so important that we hire a great attorney who knew what she was doing and kept us informed every step of the way. She explained everything to us in a way that we could understand. She always returned our calls promptly. Her professionalism deserves to be recognized. Ms. Michaels was everything we hoped for. She got one of the charges dismissed. Our daughter only paid a fine on the other charge and most importantly no criminal record. Above and beyond our expectations.
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  • Free Consultation 30 minutes
Payment methods
Cash, Credit Card


AVVO RATING 10.0 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Attorney
  • Ellen K. Michaels and Associates PLLC
  • 2005 - Present
  • Attorney
  • Cook County Public Defender's Office
  • 1994 - 2003
  • Attorney
  • Federal Defender Program
  • 1988 - 1990


  • Northwestern University School of Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1990
  • University of Michigan
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 1986

Sample of Legal Cases

  • K.S. Detroit Murder Case
  • Not Guilty all counts. Client released from custody


  • Wayne County Criminal Defense Bar Association
  • Member
  • 2009 - Present
  • Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan
  • Member
  • 2010 - 2017

Languages Spoken

  • English
  • Spanish
  • Hebrew

Honors and Awards

  • Top 100 Trial Lawyers
  • National Trial Lawyers
  • 2021
  • Excellence in Criminal Defense
  • Lawyers of Distinction
  • 2021
  • Attorney of the year
  • National Alliance of Attorneys
  • 2021
  • Top 100 National Trial Lawyer
  • The National Trial Lawyers Top 100
  • 2020
View all awards


Speaking Engagements

  • Know Your Rights
  • MIP Law: Knowing Your Constitutional Rights If Stopped By The Police
  • 2016

Attorney endorsements

Received (8)
Given (6)
Endorse Ellen
Criminal defense Attorney | May 31
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"From my perspective, Ellen Michaels excels in her advocacy skills within the courtroom. She represents her clients with fervor and effectiveness that are a testament to her commitment."
Criminal defense Attorney | Sep 03
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. Ellen is a compassionate and dedicated defender. She doesn't shrink at a challenge and is always pursuing the best for her clients."
Criminal defense Attorney | May 29
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I have known Ellen for many years. She is an exceptionally smart and tough litigator who always has the best interests of her clients at heart, and is not afraid to fight the prosecution. I strongly recommend Ellen for any criminal law matters a client may have."
Criminal defense Attorney | Apr 17
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Ms Michaels is a fantastic attorney. I strongly endorse this lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Nov 14
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I have consulted with Ms. Michaels on several cases and highly endorse her. She has a command of the subtleties of criminal procedure that allows her to get every advantage in negotiating the best possible outcome for her clients."
Criminal defense Attorney | Nov 10
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"Ms. Michaels is a skilled and seasoned defense attorney who works hard to get the job done. Never daunted by prosecutors or judges, she is able to help navigate one through the chaos of a criminal matter with the proper emotional support and superb legal skills with aplomb."
Criminal defense Attorney | Oct 13
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. Ellen takes the time to find out all the facts and works hard to represent her clients with care. I know that when I refer clients to Ellen, they are in good hands."
Criminal defense Attorney | Feb 18
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"As a fellow criminal attorney, I have worked with Ms. Michaels on many cases. She is an outstanding attorney who will always go the extra mile to defend her clients. She knows the law and is an excellent trial attorney. I have recommended her on many occasions to represent clients when my schedule does not allow. I highly endorse this attorney."
View more endorsements
Criminal defense
Criminal defense
Criminal defense
Criminal defense