Sentence modification is the legal process of altering your sentence after you have been convicted of a criminal charge. Modification can take a variety of forms such as shortening the duration of your sentence or changing your sentence from work release to home detention. Sentence modification is available for most convictions, except for credit restricted felons and violent crimes. However, just because you are able to seek sentence modification does not mean you will automatically get one. First there is a timing limitation: sentence modifications can only be sought once a year. Further, modification can only be sought a maximum of two times total throughout your sentence, so it is important to make sure you get it right. Additionally, modification may also be barred in the case of a sentence imposed as a result of a plea bargain. Lastly, there are only certain grounds that modification can be justified by: 1) new information relevant to the underlying criminal case has been discovered; the sentence imposed was illegal or erroneous in some way; the offender has completed rehabilitative or other self-improvement programs while serving the sentence; or the sentence imposed inflicts substantial hardship on the offender’s family. Sentence modification is complex with a lot of variables, and accordingly it is vital to have experienced legal representation to assist you with your modification process.
If you need assistance or have questions about a modifying a criminal sentence, please contact one of our experienced Westfield criminal defense attorneys at Webster & Garino LLC.