Second Chance Amendment to the Criminal Procedure Law | 2023 NYS Legislative Agenda

The Second Chance Amendment would make certain applicants eligible for modification of their prison sentences. Criminal Procedure Law § 440.20 permits defendants to petition the court to set aside a sentence on the grounds that it was invalid as a matter of law. The Amendment would allow for defendants to make a motion to have their sentences reduced or modified on the grounds that it is excessive, or “greater than necessary to achieve the purposes of sentencing.” Defendants would be permitted to offer evidence such as medical condition, confinement record, and age. By providing an outlet by which indicators of rehabilitation could justify release, the Amendment would incentivize good behavior and participation in rehabilitative programming. *City Bar Proposal*