Understanding Sentencing Guidelines

Both state and federal courts utilize sentencing guidelines. If you have been convicted of a crime, you might wonder how they might affect you and your situation. While you may assume that the same kind of crime always receives the same kind of sentence, the reality is more complicated. PennLaw, LLC, attorney Stephen M. Misko has decades of experience in criminal defense and will use the sentencing guidelines to your benefit to ensure that you get the lowest sentence allowed by the law.

How Sentences Are Determined

In both state and federal courts, judges use a system to determine the range of possible sentences for a given crime. This depends on:

  • The severity of the crime
  • The defendant's record
  • Other extenuating circumstances

In general, the more severe the crime, the longer the sentence. Also, if you have convictions for other offenses, that will raise the sentence as well, especially in the federal system, where there are both sentencing enhancements and mandatory minimums.

Sentencing Discretion

One thing to keep in mind in the federal system that even when using established sentencing guidelines, judges have discretion in the length of the sentence, wherein state court the sentencing ranges are strictly adhered to.

Your Best Hope

Given the broad range of subjectivity that judges bring to each case, your best hope for fair treatment is a defense attorney who will present the facts in the best possible light. Attorney Stephen M. Misko will carefully evaluate every aspect of your situation and use his decades of criminal defense experience to achieve the best possible outcome.

Get An Experienced Lawyer On Your Side

An experienced lawyer with real-world experience can make a huge difference in the courtroom. Please contact us to discuss your case. You can reach us through our online contact form or call our offices directly: 724-602-4583.

We offer free consultations to all clients. Our offices are in Butler and Pittsburgh, but we represent clients throughout the region and can meet you wherever is most convenient.