Best DUI Lawyers in Ottawa

The 7 Best DUI Lawyers in Ottawa

Driving under the influence is a serious offence in Ontario. It carries grave consequences for your life savings, vehicle insurance, license to drive, and — more importantly — your criminal record.

Aside from the steep fines you have to pay for driving-related offences, your reputation is at risk, too. This is why you’ll need the help of the best DUI lawyers in Ottawa should you find yourself in this position.

How Much Do DUI Lawyers in Ottawa Charge?

Here’s the long and short of it: it could cost a pretty penny to have a lawyer properly defend a DUI case. There are many issues and factors to consider which a lawyer can clarify and coordinate on your behalf.

But first, let’s take a sober look at the fines and consequences required if you’re arrested for DUI. For starters, if convicted for the first time, there’s a minimum fine of $600 along with a full year’s suspension of your driver’s license.

A second conviction could land you a couple of weeks in jail plus a two-year driving ban and a three-year suspension of your driver’s license. All succeeding DUI convictions could impound your car, give a lifetime suspension on your license to drive, and put an ugly mark on your criminal record.

Bail can be anywhere between $100 to over $2,000. Depending on your location, your impounded vehicle could also cost you up to $1,000 for towing services and others.

The average price range of hiring a DUI lawyer is between $1,500 to $4,000, but the severity of your situation and other factors can affect the final rate. This is on top of the other fines and fees you’re expected to pay such as alcohol or drug screening, sentencing, DUI seminars, insurance, locking devices, etc.

An ounce of prevention is still worth a pound of cure, so avoiding alcohol when you’re expected to drive is always a wise choice. However, if you should find yourself in a DUI situation, you need to know how much it will cost to have a good criminal lawyer defend your case.

Entering a plea$700 – $1,500
Trial process (for non-extreme cases)$1,500 – $4,000
Hourly consultation rate$100 – $300
Flat rate$2,400 – $3,000

Please note that the above averages do not reflect the rates of a public defender. The actual fees from private lawyers will depend on their billing process, experience level and reputation, and other factors stemming from particular DUI cases and the firm or practice.

The Best DUI Lawyers in Ottawa

Now that you have a general idea of how much it costs to hire one, let’s take a look at some of the best DUI lawyers in Ottawa as a future reference.

1.   Bruce Engel

Bruce Engel JD's Homepage
SERVICESClient defence for impaired driving and over 80 offences, dangerous driving and careless driving, youth court cases, drugs and narcotic offences, etc.
ADDRESS116 Lisgar Street Suite 210 Ottawa, Ontario K2P 0C2
CONTACT NUMBER[email protected]
(613) 235-6324

Bruce Engel has been practicing criminal law since 1991. No matter what the criminal charge is, he upholds his client’s rights and reputation above all else.

He heads his own law firm, Engels and Associates, which addresses a wide array of criminal defence cases. Impaired driving and dangerous or careless driving are just some areas he practices with over 30 years of expertise and knowledge of the law.

Whether it’s a case taken into court or a plea bargain, any DUI or driving-related offence can be explained to the client in plain and simple language. This approach to legal advice has earned him the reputation of being a caring and trustworthy lawyer.

Bruce Engel’s law firm is usually available for consultation at all hours of the day, seven days a week. Its lawyers take pride in responding as swiftly as they can to any legal matter.


  • 24-hour availability for clients
  • Helpful articles and resources on DUI cases
  • Free phone consultation


  • No BBB accreditation
  • No discernible Legal Aid services
  • Lawyer availability isn’t always guaranteed

Customer Reviews

Find out how past clients of Bruce Engel found his services:

“Bruce Engel is a brilliant lawyer and having knowledge of criminal legal concepts and a better understanding of client needs. I never think twice about referring clients to him. He is constantly reporting on new case law and is very experienced in innovative places of law. He is a best Ottawa criminal lawyer and Ottawa drug lawyers, he is very straightforward, understanding and of course, an excellent lawyer.” – T.W.

“Excellent defence attorney! Dismissed a possession with intent to sell change in a flash! I had to see the judge only once, all the other work done behind the scene by the lawyers. Elena Davies is the perfect Ottawa criminal lawyer. Very professional! Great service! Experienced and knowledgeable! Thank you for your advice and help.” – G.E.

2.   Brett McGarry

Brett McGarry's Homepage
SERVICESClient defence for DUI impaired driving, drug offences, fraud, assault (domestic, sexual, etc.), firearms and weapons, bail hearings, appeals
ADDRESS352 Elgin Street, K2P 1M8 Ottawa, Ontario
CONTACT NUMBER[email protected]
OPERATING HOURSMonday to Friday 9 AM – 5 PM
Closed on Saturdays and Sundays

Clients of Brett McGarry can expect to have all their options presented to them in clear, concise terms. Afterward, the planning for the best defence strategy will proceed with full knowledge of the law and fact-based decisions every step of the way.

If you want to put your mind at ease about how Brett McGarry handles DUI cases, simply take a look at his site’s defence success stories. There are sections for a blog and track records of the firm, as well.

One special technique he employs in preparing a client for the defence is paying attention to the most minute details of a case. He believes every possible angle must be explored to come up with a solid defence strategy.

Brett McGarry wants to make every client feel at ease and free of anxiety with every case he handles.

You can call his office for a free 30-minute consultation for any questions and legal concerns.


  • Free half-hour consultation
  • Special attention to DUI and driving-related cases
  • Wide clientele in Eastern Ontario and the Ottawa Valley


  • Closed on weekends
  • No apparent payment plans or Legal Aid
  • No BBB accreditation

Customer Reviews

These clients’ names are withheld for privacy, but their feedback for Brett McGarry’s services ring loud and clear:

I can say without hesitation that you have exceeded my expectations, both in time and in the first-class service that you offered. Even if the outcome of my case was different from what I received my testimonial would be the same. Words cannot give my appreciation justice. You were superbly efficient and professional. Your foresight on all matters in my case was truly remarkable. I owe the success and victory of my case to your dedication and perseverance, which you showed throughout the time that you were handling my case. It goes without saying that I will always refer others to you. Once again, my heartfelt thanks and appreciation.” – Name withheld

‘I was charged with Care and Control, and over 80. I was sleeping in the driver’s seat of my car with the car turned on when I was suddenly arrested. I contacted Brett for a consultation and he assured me I had a good chance of beating the charges. Brett was professional and knew what he was doing in the courtroom. I am very thankful for his services and would highly recommend him, as he is very knowledgeable in this area of criminal law.” – Name withheld

3.   David Anber

David Anber's Homepage
SERVICESClient defence for DUI offences, driving offences, driver’s license cases, serious driving offences, speeding/racing cases, drug offences, regulatory offences, bail hearings, appeals and reviews
ADDRESS150 Metcalfe Street, Suite 2300 Ottawa, ON K2P 1P1
CONTACT NUMBER613­­-755­-4008
[email protected]
OPERATING HOURS24/7 (Strictly by appointment)

Even though his firm addresses different areas of practice, the prime focus of David Anber’s defence is on driving-related cases. These include DUI, driving, driver’s licensing, serious driving, speeding and racing offences.

He has now represented over a thousand clients across Ontario and Quebec. David Anber’s mission is to provide advocacy to those who need it aside from his expertise and knowledge of the law.

His personal approach to every case regardless of its severity and scope makes his practice stand out. You can reach him by email or phone for a free consultation, though walk-ins are discouraged.

David Anber takes on Legal Aid cases for those who need financial support for the charges against them. There is a form on the website for potential clients to fill up to see if they qualify for this service.


  • 24/7 services via phone or email
  • Takes on Legal Aid cases
  • Free initial consultation
  • Gives practical advice on different legal questions on the site


  • No walk-ins (strictly by appointment)

Customer Reviews

Read how past clients benefited from David Anber’s legal defence:

“Great result – criminal charges dismissed Great result in a criminal law case. Fantastic team, good solid communication and the results: case dismissed.” – User DA844241

“I am very grateful to Mr. Anber for all the good work he did and got me the best possible outcome in my case. David and his team were fantastic, He was available 24/7 for any inquiries I had and would return my texts promptly. From our first consultation, David suggested the best course of action and how we should proceed. BRAVO to David and to his entire team for the professional guidance through the entire process, I would highly recommend his office to anyone who needs a good lawyer.” – User dxl12947

4.   Michael Johnston (Shore Johnston Hyslop Day LLP)

Michael Johnston (Shore Johnston Hyslop Day LLP)'s Homepage
SERVICESClient defence for DUI/impaired/refuse breath sample /blow over 80mgs, dangerous driving causing death/injury, drug charges (all types), domestic abuse, domestic violence, assault (all types), robbery/theft/fraud, professional discipline complaints, administrative tribunals and inquiries, etc.
ADDRESS200 Elgin Street, Suite 800 Ottawa, Ontario K2P 1L5
CONTACT NUMBER[email protected]
OPERATING HOURSMonday to Friday 9 AM – 5 PM
Closed on Saturdays and Sundays

For criminal defence lawyer Michael Johnston, no charge should ever be considered a minor one. Everything has to be taken seriously because a criminal record can have a negative impact on one’s life for a long time.

As a practicing lawyer at Shore Johnston Hyslop Day, he does meticulous preparation for every single case. Under the Results page on the firm’s website, there are detailed narratives about how this kind of discipline gave way to acquittals and not guilty verdicts for clients.

Michael Johnston has appeared at Ontario courts at all levels, as well as at the Supreme Court of Canada. He believes that everyone should have access to justice no matter their financial status.

For those who are worried about the costs of hiring him, Michael Johnston offers an affordable payment scheme to take away the anxiety on expenses. As a member of JusticeNet, he can represent clients at reduced fees, as well.


  • Offers a flexible payment program to clients
  • Accepts Legal Aid Ontario certificates
  • Offers a 25% discount to Canadian Armed Forces members


  • Closed on weekends
  • No BBB accreditation

Customer Reviews

See the quality of Michael Johnston’s legal services with the following client feedback:

“Mr. Johnston came recommended from 2 of my close friends who had success with him in previous cases. Despite being in a global pandemic Michael and his team took my case and handled my matter promptly and professionally going over and above with clear communication and attention to detail. Having to choose Legal representation is a stressful decision and after my first conversation with Mr.Johnston, I was confident I made the right choice. I recommend Michael and his team to anyone facing criminal charges, his kindness and compassion made the stress of court disappear.” – Jeff Biscope

“Michael Johnston is a confident, well-educated, no-nonsense litigator. While working with us he made time to answer all our questions and explain the next steps for our case. Mr.Johnston provided a level of professionalism and care that is unmatched.” – Brent Naylor

5.   Solomon Friedman

Solomon Friedman's Homepage
SERVICESClient defence for DUI and driving offences, bail hearing, appeals, drugs and firearms charges, robbery and theft, fraud and white-collar crime, administration of justice offences, etc.
ADDRESS200 Elgin Street, Suite 403 Ottawa, ON K2P 1L5
CONTACT NUMBER613-223-4089
[email protected]
OPERATING HOURSMonday to Friday 8.30 AM – 5.30 PM
Closed on Saturdays and Sundays

Solomon Friedman is half of the Affordable Defence team (AKA Friedman Mansour LLP). The two partners utilize innovative legal techniques when representing their clients.

His experience and scope have taken him to the Supreme Court of Canada and the Ontario Court of Appeal on behalf of his clients. He also writes on legal topics and has been published in the Montreal Gazette and the National Post.

Solomon Friedman is a panellist at Legal Aid Ontario’s Extremely Serious Criminal Matters. It’s his belief that all individuals, no matter the severity of the charges against them, have a right to legal representation whether they can afford it or not.

You can get in touch with his office for a free consultation. Clients who are charged after office hours can also avail themselves of the 24-hour emergency consultation services.


  • Accepts Legal Aid certificates
  • Open for 24-hour emergency consultations
  • Free consultation


  • Closed on weekends
  • No BBB accreditation

Customer Reviews

Read these clients’ comments and find out if Solomon Friedman is a good fit for your legal needs:

“Excellent service. Excellent and precise communications skills. Very clear on what my position was, what the legal actions available were, and what his strategy would be to address the situation. And precise execution. He assured me of my rights and position every step of the way. Made me feel totally comfortable with my rights, and let me continue with my life. Highly recommended.” – V.K.

“The team of lawyers and staff that can help you. They have the resources of experience, knowledge, and people-power to go to work on your defence. Their reputation as successful defence counsel is built on a history of strong advocacy, which they can bring to work for you.” – Name withheld

6.   Kruse Law

Kruse Law Homepage
SERVICESClient Defense for:
Criminal Harassment
Domestic Assault
Drug Charges
DUI / Impaired Driving
Sexual Assault
Uttering Threats
Weapons Offences
White Collar Crimes
CONTACT NUMBER+1-844-278-0808
[email protected]
OPERATING HOURSContact company for more information

DUI cases can be hard to navigate, especially if the court of law is not in your favor. However, Kruse Law believes that that doesn’t mean you should take your ruling lying down.

Kruse Law comprises of the top Criminal & DUI lawyers that can be found in Ottawa. While they specialise in representing DUI cases, they’re also capable of representing clients in various areas of practice, including those involving assault, theft, and drugs.

Many clients praise them for being hardworking and relentless when it comes to defending their client, as they strive to go the extra mile for their cases. They’ll make sure that everything is investigated thoroughly and all possibilities are explored fully.

Kruse Law will make sure that you don’t have to plead guilty to get a lighter sentence, but instead win the trial. If you’re in need of their services, make sure to take advantage of the free first consultation they offer.


  • Diverse areas of practice
  • Constant communication
  • Immediate response
  • Free consultation


  • No consultation hours available on website

7.   Celine Dostaler

Celine Dostaler Homepage
SERVICESPractice Areas:
ADDRESS200 Elgin St, Suite 901
Ottawa ON K2P 1L5

1046 rue King, CP 329,
L’Orignal, Ontario K0B 1K0
CONTACT NUMBEROffice: 613.695.8595
Cell: 613.863.8595 (24/7)
Fax: 1.613.651.9945
Email: [email protected]
OPERATING HOURSMonday – Friday: 9 AM – 5 PM

Celine Dostaler is a criminal defense lawyer skilled in numerous areas of practise, including DUIs. She operates solo, which allows her to connect and coordinate with her clients more easily.

She may be a one woman team, but the work she does is on par with a firm, if not more. Her tenacity and thoroughness is praised by many of her clients, as it not only helps moves things along more quickly but also allows her to sway the court to your favor.

As you work together, you can expect transparent communication from her regarding your case and its developments. If you’re feeling unsure about anything, you’re more than welcome to consult with her on phone– no additional fees required.

With her skills, experience, and connections, Celine Dostaler is someone we recommend if you’re in need of a DUI lawyer. No matter the case she’s given, she will work tirelessly to achieve the outcome that her client desires.


  • Specialises in criminal defense law
  • Proactive and tireless defense
  • No hidden fees
  • Free 30 min. consultation


  • Not open during weekends

FAQs About DUI Lawyers in Ottawa

Reading about the best DUI lawyers in Ottawa has hopefully given you some peace of mind and the resources for when you need legal help.

If you know of other reputable DUI lawyers that should be on our list, don’t hesitate to send us a message.

And if you’ve experienced wrongful actions from someone and need good representation, we got you covered. Read about the best personal injury lawyers in Ottawa to get more information.