Easier sentencing for offenders caring for disabled family members

The Federal Sentencing Guidelines have been revised to include more lenient sentencing options for offenders who are primary caregivers for disabled family members.

These updates reflect a growing recognition of the unique challenges faced by such individuals. They went into effect on November 1, 2023.

If you or someone you know is responsible for caring for a disabled family member, you might be eligible for a reduced sentence, even if you have already been convicted of a federal crime. Contact federal criminal defense attorney Robert M. Helfend at 800-834-6434 for a free case evaluation and to discuss your case.

What are the Federal Sentencing Guidelines?

The United States Sentencing Commission (USSC) is a committee that plays a crucial role in setting federal sentencing policies. The guidelines it establishes are designed to ensure uniformity and fairness in federal sentencing, taking into account the specifics of each case. These are the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.

Major changes in the guidelines

  1. Expansion for Caregivers of Adult Disabled Children – The guidelines now allow for sentence reductions for defendants caring for disabled or medically incapacitated adult children, a significant expansion from the previous focus on minor children.
  2. Provision for Sole Caregivers of Incapacitated Parents – This addition caters to defendants who are the only caregivers for an incapacitated parent, allowing judges to consider more lenient sentences.
  3. Consideration of Unique Family Circumstances – The guidelines have broadened to accommodate various family situations that may warrant deviations from standard sentencing, even involving extended family members or non-biological relatives.

Implications for affected offenders

These changes provide hope for offenders struggling with significant family caregiving responsibilities, offering a chance for reduced sentences and emphasizing the human element in sentencing decisions.

Get help with your case

If you’re in a situation where these new guidelines might apply, it’s important to get specialized legal advice. Contact Robert M. Helfend at 800-834-6434 for a free consultation.

With his expertise in federal defense law, Mr. Helfend can help you understand how these changes might benefit your case and guide you through the legal process.

Published November 10, 2023.