Do You Need A Lawyer For a Clemency Hearing In Florida?

Do I Need a Lawyer for a Clemency Hearing

Being convicted of a crime is an emotional and stressful experience. Sometimes when you’re convicted, certain rights are taken away. In The United States, you can apply for clemency to be pardoned from the offense and regain the rights you lost following your conviction. Being granted clemency is not a quick or easy process. One of the most common questions people ask regarding clemency is whether they need a lawyer to represent them at the hearing. To answer that question, let’s take a look at the clemency process.

How Can You Apply For Clemency In Florida?

It’s not an automatic guarantee that you’ll be granted clemency. However, the first step is to submit your application. Interested applicants can obtain the necessary application from the Office of Executive Clemency. Once completed, the forms must be filed with the Coordinator of Executive Clemency. There is no application fee required for this process.

As soon as the application is received, the Office of Executive Clemency works to determine whether the applicant is eligible. To become eligible, an individual must have completed their sentence and all required supervision. 

In Florida, a ballot referendum known as Amendment 4, which voters approved in November 2018, automatically restores the right to vote once a felon has completed their sentence. Also, Florida recently made it possible for ex-felons to regain their right to bear arms.

How To Understand the Clemency Process

If an application for clemency is approved, it moves on to the investigative phase of the process. This phase is conducted by the Investigation Office of Clemency Investigations. At that point, an investigator will be assigned to the case and will work to determine whether there are any factors that disqualify a person from clemency. Common factors that can disqualify someone include:

  • Any convictions or charges since the person served their last sentence
  • Not paying any restitution or court costs
  • Failure to complete the required supervision
  • Outstanding traffic fines, parking tickets, etc

Depending on the results of the investigation, some cases will go to a hearing. Clemency hearings in Florida take place every quarter. Although attendance at a clemency hearing is not required, being present to argue one’s case typically works in your favor. Likewise, an attorney is not required at a clemency hearing. However, their presence and expertise can help a person understand and work through this difficult process.

An Experienced Clemency Lawyer Can Help Your Case

If you’ve completed your sentence and would like to regain your civil rights, consider applying for clemency. In Orlando, The Umansky Law Firm is a source of experienced attorneys who can help you navigate this complex process. With more than 100 years of combined experience, our attorneys understand what it takes to help you get the results you want. They also care about you as a person and want to see you succeed.

At The Umansky Law Firm, we are proud to help you earn your second chance at life by assisting you with the clemency process. To get started, contact our office online or call us at 407-228-3838 and talk to a real attorney.