Clemency and Pardons Attorney Illinois
Clemency and Pardons in Illinois. If you’ve been convicted of a felony, it can feel like the word “felon” follows you everywhere you go, even after rehabilitating and making real, permanent life changes. You do have one recourse: clemency in the form of an executive pardon. At Drummond Law, our clemency and pardons attorney team has been fighting for justice and protecting the rights of the vulnerable throughout the Midwest since 1976. With our help, you can create a convincing argument that humanizes you and shows how far you’ve come since committing the crimes. If you’re ready to finally be free from the consequences of past mistakes, call an Illinois clemency and pardons attorney at Drummond Law at 217-388-1103 or contact us online.
Clemency vs. Pardons in Illinois: What’s the Difference?
Many people hear these terms used in the same context and aren’t sure what the difference is, if there is one. The terms are not interchangeable. Clemency is a general term for reducing the punishment for a crime. There are three types of clemency, and a pardon is one of them:
- Pardon – Granting a pardon essentially forgives a crime and eliminates any punishment. However, a pardon will not clear your criminal record and it will still be available to the public.
- Commutation – Commuting a sentence means shortening the sentence, letting an individual out with time served or commuting a death sentence to life imprisonment. Justifications are often illness, old age, good behavior or the fact that an individual’s punishment was unusually harsh given the crime. The crime will still appear on a criminal record.
- Reprieve – A reprieve temporarily suspends punishment for a set period of time while the court reviews an aspect of the case. It does not mean that the original punishment is no longer enforceable. This is common in death penalty cases soon before the date of execution.
Pardons and commutations are executive powers that can only be granted by a governor for state crimes or the president for federal crimes. A reprieve is granted through a court order or by the state or federal executive branch.
If your Illinois record is not expungeable or sealable, clemency or a pardon will be your last option for having your record wiped clean. Crimes that cannot be expunged or sealed include:
- Minor traffic offenses
- Sexual assault, Sexual abuse and other sex crimes
- Reckless driving if you were 25 or older
- Domestic battery
- Violation of an Order of Protection, Civil No-Contact Order or Stalking No-Contact Order
- Class A misdemeanors under the Humane Care for Animals Act
How to Receive Clemency or Pardon in Illinois
The procedure for seeking clemency or a pardon is laid out in 730 ILCS 5/3-3-13. It is a 4-step process that your clemency attorney at Drummond Law will help you with every step of the way:
- File Your Clemency or Pardon Petition – The petition needs to include a brief history of the case, why you are seeking clemency or pardon and any other information the Illinois Prisoner Review Board requires. Your clemency lawyer at Drummond Law knows how to write a persuasive argument that will convince the board of the merits of your case. The state’s attorney and any victims of the crime will be notified and allowed to make a statement.
- Have a Hearing in Front of the Board – Your Drummond Law clemency and pardon lawyer in Illinois will be by your side and persuade the board that you are not a threat to public safety, that you have rehabilitated and that you deserve to have your freedom restored.
- The Board Sends a Confidential Report to the Governor – The board will review your case in private and send the governor their opinion on whether or not you should be pardoned or receive clemency.
- The Governor Makes a Decision – The governor is not bound by what the board recommends, and the governor is not required to decide within any set amount of time. If the governor denies your petition you can re-file after 1 year has passed since the denial.
If you wish to have your record expunged as well, when your Illinois clemency attorney files your petition they can also file for permission to expunge and permission to restore your gun rights. If the governor grants those, your Drummond Law clemency and pardons attorney will assist in filing those separate petitions in court.
Illinois Clemency and Pardons Attorney | Drummond Law
While some people look down on those with a criminal past, Your Drummond Law clemency and pardons attorney in Illinois seeks to empower them and see them rewarded for the work they’ve put in to be better versions of themselves. Bad decisions made years ago do not have to have permanent consequences. If you’re ready to finally have a clean slate, call an Illinois clemency and pardons attorney at Drummond Law at 217-388-1103 or contact us online.