Key Elements of Guidelines Systems

  • Active Sentencing Commission

    Active Sentencing Commission

    Indicates whether the jurisdiction has or once had an active sentencing commission to review and periodically update the guidelines.

  • Prison and Jail Resource Management

    Prison and Jail Resource Management

    Indicates whether one of the goals of the guidelines is to help manage jail and prison resources.

  • Enforcement by Appeals

    Enforcement by Appeals

    Indicates whether and to what extent the parties can appeal the sentence on the grounds that it is not consistent with guidelines rules or policies.

  • Parole Discretion Abolished

    Parole Discretion Abolished

    Indicates the extent to which parole as the mechanism for determining the timing of release from prison has been abolished or retained.

  • Non-Felony Level Offenses Also Covered

    Non-Felony Level Offenses Also Covered

    Indicates whether the guidelines cover felony offenses only or felony and non-felony offenses.

  • Sentencing Grids Used

    Sentencing Grids Used

    Indicates whether the jurisdiction employs sentencing grids, or whether narrative rules and/or worksheets are used to derive recommended sentences.

  • Consecutive Sentencing Regulated

    Consecutive Sentencing Regulated

    Indicates whether the guidelines limit the sentencing judge’s discretion in choosing between consecutive and concurrent prison sentences for multiple current offenses.

  • Guidelines Require Legislative Approval

    Guidelines Require Legislative Approval

    Indicates whether and to what extent modifications to the guidelines require legislative approval before taking effect.


    Jurisdiction Profiles

    Jurisdiction Highlights

    The Oregon guidelines include not only recommended prison terms but also recommended upper limits on probationary jail terms and on the aggregate severity of probation conditions (total “sanction units;” each type of probation condition is assigned a given number of sanction units).

    Full Oregon Profile

    New and Noteworthy

    Some guidelines are mandatory unless there are grounds for departure. Other guidelines are only advisory; judges must consider but need not follow them. Each of these system types has variations, yielding a continuum not a dichotomy.

    New To The Repository

    Oregon Case Law
    Posted: July 26, 2016
    Massachusetts Profile
    Posted: July 25, 2016
    Massachusetts Case Law
    Posted: July 25, 2016
    Maryland Profile
    Posted: July 25, 2016
    Maryland Case Law
    Posted: July 25, 2016