Getting the Best Outcome at Sentencing

Criminal SentencingIf your recent trial has resulted in a conviction, your attorney’s job is far from over. Having a skilled attorney involved during the sentencing phase can make all the difference when it comes to getting the best outcome at sentencing.

With many years of post-trial law experience, Marcia Shein is an authority on this subject, and speaks regularly at attorney conferences on strategies lawyers can implement to help obtain the best outcome for their clients. Here is a summary of what Marcia does for her own clients at sentencing, and what she shares with other attorneys on the topic.


The quest to obtain the best outcome at sentencing can begin long before a verdict is reached, with effective plea negotiations. A knowledgeable attorney will be able to determine the proper plea language, as well as which elements of the case are best suited for negotiation and when to argue for certain concessions, etc.


It’s highly recommended that a trusted attorney be involved at the client’s pre-sentencing interview with the probation officer, and indeed throughout the process. The attorney can offer helpful insights during the interview, as well as documenting and supporting any objections to the pre-sentence report.


In a written sentencing memorandum, your attorney persuasively details the mitigating circumstances and any objections surrounding the conviction to be considered by the court prior to sentencing. When written effectively, this document can have a significant impact on obtaining the best outcome at sentencing.


One of the more complex factors of the sentencing process is to appropriate a measure of calculated loss to each offense, particularly in financial or fraud cases. In other words, how much loss did each of the defendant’s actions actually incur, and how does that translate to appropriate sentencing? At this point, it’s critical to have a skilled attorney who can effectively calculate loss, presenting supporting facts and arguments in your favor.

Looking at the points above, it becomes easy to see in how many ways a skilled defense lawyer can help you obtain the best possible outcome at sentencing. For more information, contact the Federal Criminal Law Center.