Motion to Reduce Sentence
No matter how well-prepared your defense is or how much you cooperate with law enforcement and the court, you receive an exceptionally harsh sentence. What happened? Despite prosecutors and judges having specific sentencing guidelines to follow, sometimes the penalties a defendant receives can be disproportionate and illegal. Many times, new evidence surfaces which demands that a court reduce your punishment.
To get a judge to reduce a sentence, you or your attorney need to file a motion to reduce the sentence under Florida Criminal Procedure Rule 3.800(c). It’s highly advised to confer with a seasoned criminal defense attorney about your situation to make sure this is the right path for your case and to protect against missing the critical 60-day deadline imposed by this rule.
The experienced Orlando legal team at The Umansky Law Firm brings the knowledge and experience required to assist you through a reduction of sentence process. Don’t let your substantial sentence make you feel hopeless. Speak with us about your case so we can discuss appropriate legal options and how to proceed.
Success Rate of Reduction of Sentences in Orlando
When a defendant receives a sentence, they have 60 days from that day to file a motion to reduce the sentence. The presiding judge may also reduce the punishment of their own accord. Finally, one can also file this action within 60 days if:
- An appellate court issues an order that dismisses an original appeal; or
- After a higher court issues a judicial review order to a lower court due to extraordinary circumstances
If the review is tied to a defendant’s motion to reduce a sentence, a ruling on the action must occur within 90 days from the filing date or at such a time that all parties agree. It’s possible for the court to extend that time period further if necessary, but timeliness is critical in any motion involving 3.800(c).
Successful motions to reduce sentences rely heavily on the presiding judge’s opinion of your case and circumstances surrounding your request. Motions that received favorable rulings by the court involved the defendant’s cooperation with assisting prosecutors in winning convictions in other cases. Sometimes age and illness are factors when a court decides to lower the length of a sentence. Whether you are a public danger is still equally important, so any of these reasons mentioned might not have enough pull on the judge’s ruling.
Why File a Motion to Reduce Sentence?
There are several reasons why one should file a motion to reduce a sentence, and an attorney is the best source to review your case and determine the cause. Certain situations that can encourage a court to rule in favor of your request include:
- Florida state guidelines for sentencing have been changed
- New evidence
- You are terminally ill
- Advanced age
- You cooperated and/or assisted prosecutors in a different case
- Ineffectiveness of your previous counsel
- You have mitigating factors that were not previously disclosed
If any of these circumstances could have resulted in your sentence being too harsh, or you feel there are grounds for a reduction, speak with your legal counsel right away. You will have to produce evidence and supporting information for any claim you make to justify reducing your punishment.
Hire an Experienced Orlando Criminal Attorney
All too often defendants who receive severe punishment don’t realize they can file for a reduction. This is the risk one takes when facing criminal charges without an attorney to inform you of your rights and options for your case. If you or a loved one has received a sentence that seems overly punitive, obtain legal representation before the 60-day window expires. The criminal defense attorneys at The Umansky Law Firm are here to protect your rights, inform you of the options available in your case, and help you reduce your sentence.
As former prosecutors, we know how Florida courts process motions for reduction of penalties and can develop a strategy to increase your odds for a favorable ruling. Our more than 100 years of combined experience ensures that we leave no opportunity missed when helping you to get past your conviction and get your life back as soon as possible. Bill Umansky is a member of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and is on the Board of Directors of the Central Florida Trial Lawyers Association. Contact us today for a comprehensive case evaluation to determine your best path forward.