What’s New July 2020

COVID-19 Updates: Compassionate Release for Federal Inmates and DC Code Offenders

Through the First Step Act, Congress sought to revive compassionate release of inmates by allowing them to directly petition courts for relief from their sentence, rather than leaving that power solely in the hands of the BOP.  Under the First Step Act, a court may conduct a review of the sentence upon motion of the defendant, if they have exhausted all administrative remedies to appeal the BOP’s failure to bring a motion, or if 30 days has lapsed from denial of such a request by the warden of the defendant’s facility, whichever is earlier. For DC Code Offenders, there is a newly passed law that is modeled on the First Step Act compassionate release provisions. However, for DC Code Offenders, there is no such exhaustion requirement under the recently enacted DC Compassionate Release statute. Contact RaquinMercer about compassionate release for federal inmates and DC Code Offenders.

Contact RaquinMercer

COVID-19 Updates – Business Owners With Criminal History May Now Be Eligible For PPP Loans

At first, the SBA excluded many people with a conviction from the Payroll Protection Program. However, the SBA recently changed the rules in response to litigation in which the Court found the rule “arbitrary and capricious.” Under the new rule, small business owners with pending misdemeanor charges and those on probation or parole for older crimes may now apply. Business owners with pending felony charges or those currently on probation or parole for a felony offense committed in the last year, and five years for those with financial crimes, are still barred from eligibility. Now that Congress has extended the PPP program, thousands of small business and nonprofits that had previously been excluded are now eligible. It is especially helpful because some or all of the loans are forgivable. See the Washington Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights website for more information on how you may qualify.