Federal sentences are long, but there is hope. The landscape of federal sentences changes constantly. Over the past decade our office has handled thousands of sentence reduction cases. Some reductions result from changes made by the Supreme Court, some from new laws passed by Congress, and some by amendments made to the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.
Regardless of how the opportunity for a reduction arises, it can sometimes result in a drastic change in your sentence.
Importantly, a change in the law often comes with discretion on the part of the judge. In other words, just because you qualify to ask the court to reduce your sentence, the judge can decide not to reduce your sentence. The number one thing that will help you get ready for a sentence reduction, should one arise for your case, is to stay out of trouble in prison and engage in every program you can. You should take classes aimed at education, but also classes aimed at personal growth like anger management, healthy thinking, or parenting. You should also take the opportunity take college classes if they’re offered or to learn a trade. Some prisons offer extensive apprenticeship programs through the Department of Labor that give you thousands of hours of training that provide certification and make you eligible for union employment upon reentry. Take advantage of every opportunity so that when the time comes to ask for a reduction, you can show the judge how you’ve been diligently working to better your chances when you go home.
In the meantime, we have gathered together some resources here to keep you up to date on the newest changes in to federal sentencing.