- The Commission promulgates guidelines that judges consult when sentencing federal offenders. When the guidelines are amended, a subsequent Guidelines Manual is published.
- In this section, you will find the Commission’s comprehensive archive of yearly amendments and Guidelines Manuals dating back to 1987.
The U.S. Sentencing Commission, a bipartisan, independent agency located in the judicial branch of government, was created by Congress in 1984 to reduce sentencing disparities and promote transparency and proportionality in sentencing.
The Commission collects, analyzes, and distributes a broad array of information on federal sentencing practices. The Commission also continuously establishes and amends sentencing guidelines for the judicial branch and assists the other branches in developing effective and efficient crime policy. Learn the basics of federal sentencing.
Upcoming Training Events
Virtual Sentencing Guidelines training is now open to a national audience! Sessions are available on a first come, first served basis to all members of the court family.
Ask the HelpLine
The HelpLine assists judges, probation officers, and practitioners in understanding and applying the guidelines. You can submit your questions electronically or call us directly.
Quick Facts publications give readers basic facts about a single area of federal crime in an easy-to-read, two-page format. The Commission releases new Quick Facts periodically.
Research Notes give background information on the technical details of the Commission’s data collection process and provide answers to common data analysis questions.
How do the guidelines apply in a case with multiple counts? How do you score criminal history convictions? Follow the decision trees to answer these questions.
Want to learn more about relevant statutes, case law and guidelines on a specific topic? Discover our primers that focus on topics ranging from drug trafficking to criminal history to supervised release....
Use these worksheets to help determine the applicable offense level, criminal history score, and guideline range in an individual offender’s case.
Glossary of Sentencing Terms
Unclear about some of the terms found in the Guidelines Manual? This glossary covers everything from “Abuse of Trust” to “Zone D”.