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Effective November 1, 2023, Amendment 821 provides potential sentencing reduction for individuals already serving federal sentences. To qualify requires an individual to meet a list of requirements, including that they received zero criminal history points at the time of sentencing. If each requirement is met, as detailed below, an individual may receive a two-level reduction to the originally calculated total offense level. In many cases this will reduce the applicable sentencing range. The purpose behind the amendment is to reflect the goals of the 2018 First Step Act to both reform the federal prison system and to reduce recidivism rates.

To qualify for a retroactive sentence reduction under Amendment 821 requires:

  • A sentence imposed before November 1, 2023;
  • Zero criminal history points;
  • No §3A1.4 adjustment involving terrorism;
  • No use of violence or credible threats of violence;
  • No death or serious bodily injury;
  • A non-sex offense;
  • The defendant did not personally cause substantial financial hardship;
  • No involvement of a firearm or other dangerous weapon;
  • That the offense is not covered by §2H1.1 involving civil rights/offenses of individual rights;
  • No adjustment under §3A1.1 or §3A1.5 for offenses involving hate crimes or human rights violations;
  • No adjustments under §3B1.1 involving an aggravated role and no application of 18 USC § 848, involving a continuing criminal enterprise

Even if an individual meets each of the above criteria, a sentence reduction is still within the discretion of the court. As a part of its discretionary determination, the court may consider conduct since the original sentencing proceeding.

If you believe you or a loved one may qualify for a two-point reduction under Amendment 821, contact the Law Office of J.D. Lloyd for a consultation at 205-538-3340.