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Changes to Ohio Judcial Release Statute - What Even Some Judges and Attorneys Don't Know (Yet)

A recent change to Ohio's Judicial Release Statute has gone unnoticed by many judges and attorneys. 

Under the new changes to Ohio law, offenders who are now sentenced to under two years of incarceration at the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction can now file for judicial release once they arrive in the prison system.

Prior to the changes, offenders had to serve at least thirty (30) days in the prison system before they could apply for judicial release.  In some instances, when the thirty day period was added to jail credit, the offender was almost at the completion of their sentences.  Now, this will allow the offenders the opportunity to file right away and begin the judicial release process, which can take anywhere from four to twelve weeks (depending on the county). 

These changes will allow inmates with lower sentences, including all fourth and fifth degree felonies, to apply for judicial release once they arrive in prison.  It will also allow some third degree felony offenders the ability to apply for judicial release earlier.  

If you're interested if a loved one is eligible for judicial release, your first step is to check the ODRC Offender page and determine (1) what their sentence is; (2) when their arrival date and expected release dates are; and (3) determine if their offense is eligible for judicial release.  

As with prior versions of the judicial release law, certain offenses in Ohio are ineligible for judicial release.  First, any mandatory terms of incarceration are ineligible for judicial release -- however, if a mandatory term of incarceration is combined with a non-mandatory term, the offender may still be able to file for judicial release after their original sentence expires.  

Additionally, some offenses, such as theft while in public office or bribery, are ineligible for judicial release.  A complete list can be found in the statute.      

If you are interested in seeking an attorney to represent your loved one in filing a judicial release, please contact VanHo Law by either submitting an inquiry on our website or calling us at 330-653-8511.   

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