Monthly Archives: December 2013

What is NLPA and How Can They Help?

GavelHow does NLPA assist attorneys with the preparation of research and legal documents?

For the past 25 years the research staff at National Legal Professional Associates (NLPA) has been providing exceptional research and writing legal assistance to lawyers that is affordable, fast and reliable. We assist the lawyer who does not have the luxury of having a full-time staff of research attorneys in the law library down the hall to whom he or she can assign research and writing projects. We work at the direction and under the supervision of the attorney in charge of representing their Client. By utilizing NLPA, the supervising attorney is left to do what he does best—represent their client!

What Can NLPA Do to Help You?:

1. Improve your research product. NLPA’s staff has for 25 years been known for providing cutting edge arguments containing the latest case law. Our legal data base is one of the most complete in the country. Each research assignment is completed by a team of experienced licensed attorneys.

2. Get control of your life. Many attorneys have told us that they use the assistance of NLPA to be able to spend time with their family, reduce the need to work on the weekend or at night.

3. Cost effective. NLPA’s hourly research rate is less than that of the supervising counsel so it is cost effective and helps increase your earning potential.

4. Improve your Winning Track Record – Using NLPA’s research staff to prepare Motions and Briefs for your clients makes you part of the most successful research and writing legal team in the country. Check the “Research Results” section of our website to see the overwhelming success rate NLPA has helped counsel achieve.

If you are interested in learning more about how NLPA can help you, contact NLPA for a no cost no obligation communication with one of our attorneys.

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How to Get a Sentence Reduction

open-cell-doorAs anyone who has had contact with the federal criminal justice system can attest, the sentences issued therein are little short of draconian. Fortunately, there exists several methods by which an individual can obtain a sentence reduction.  Have you ever wondered how to get a sentence reduction? Perhaps the easiest way to obtain a reduced sentence is to cooperate with the government.  If an individual assists the government in the investigation or prosecution of another person who has committed an offense, said individual is eligible for a sentence reduction pursuant to U.S.S.G. § 5K1.1. The usefulness of the assistance provided will determine the level of the sentence reduction. Importantly, a sentence can be reduced under § 5K1.1 at any time, even after a defendant has already been sentenced. However, the motion must be filed by the government. A defendant, except in rare circumstances, will not receive relief under § 5K1.1 absent a government motion.

However, a defendant can still receive a reduced sentence based upon cooperation with the government, even absent a government motion, if such assistance is provided prior to sentencing. The defendant can raise his assistance as a factor to be considered in receiving a reasonable sentence under 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a). As the United States Sentencing Guidelines are no longer mandatory, a defendant is free to raise any mitigating factor at sentencing that could lead to a reasonable sentence under 18 U.S.C. § 3553. Common mitigating factors include rehabilitation since incarceration, age at time of release, substance abuse difficulties, familial responsibilities, and a difficult childhood.

If an individual seeks a reduced sentence after being sentence, he can typically pursue several avenues. The first is to file a direct appeal, claiming that the sentence was issued in error. Issues raised in a direct appeal must be evident from the trial court record. Should an individual wish to raise an issue regarding a sentencing reduction that is not evident from the trial record, he can file a post-conviction motion pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255. Issues such as ineffective assistance of counsel at sentencing, the issuance of new and favorable sentencing laws, or facts rising since sentencing can give rise to viable post-conviction claims. For example, if a defendant provides assistance to the government in the investigation or prosecution of a another individual, but the government fails to move for a reduced sentence under U.S.S.G. § 5K1.1, the issue can be raised in a motion under § 2255.

A sentence can also be reduced if a Guideline utilized in calculating an individual’s sentence is later reduced. Title 18 U.S.C. § 3582 is a statute that provides an avenue for redress of sentencing errors in a federal court. A criminal defendant may move for a modification of sentence when he has been sentenced to a term of incarceration “based on a sentencing range that has subsequently lowered by the Sentencing Commission pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 994(o), upon motion of the defendant.” 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2).

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