The Commission establishes sentencing policies and practices for the federal courts. Each year, the Commission reviews and refines these policies in light of congressional action, decisions from courts of appeals, sentencing-related research, and input from the criminal justice community.
In this section, you can follow the Commission’s work through the amendment cycle as priorities are set, research is performed, testimony is heard, and amendments are adopted.
The U.S. Sentencing Commission is an independent agency in the judicial branch that was created as part of the Sentencing Reform Act of 1984. Commissioners are appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate. The Attorney General, or the Attorney General’s designee, and the Chair of the U.S. Parole Commission serve as ex officio, nonvoting members of the Commission.
In this section, learn about the Commission’s mission, structure, and ongoing work.
(September 2017) This publication summarizes the nature of emerging federal alternative-to-incarceration court programs and highlights several legal and social science issues relating to them. The Commission’s analysis is qualitative rather than quantitative at this juncture because of a lack of available empirical data about the programs. The publication concludes by identifying several questions about the federal court programs that policymakers and courts should consider in deciding whether, and if so how, such programs should operate in the federal criminal justice system in the future.
Supervised Release (June 2016) This primer provides a general overview of the imposition and revocation of supervised release. A variety of statutes, guidelines and policies govern different aspects of the supervised release framework, and this primer is not a substitute for independent research and primary authority. To the extent this primer and its appendices identify case law, it is not...
Commissioners voted at a public meeting to promulgate an amendment to the guideline definition of a "crime of violence." Commissioners also voted to publish additional proposed guideline amendments. Commission seeks comment on revisions to immigration related guidelines, compassionate release, etc.