In April 2014, Deputy Attorney General James Cole announced a set of criteria the Justice Department will consider when reviewing clemency petitions from federal prisoners.  Below are Instructions and Reference Materials ​for evaluating whether applicants meet the criteria and what is required in a clemency package. For frequently asked questions on the Justice Department's clemency initiative, see the Clemency Project 2014 Overview and FAQ's.

The following individuals prepared or contributed to these materials:
Amy Baron-Evans, Jennifer Niles Coffin, Janet Hinton, Sarah Gannett, Paresh Patel, Sapna Mirchandani, Molly Roth, Michael Holley, Rosemary Cakmis, Renee Pietropaolo, MiAngel Cody, Davina Chen, Mark W. Osler, JaneAnne Murray, Todd R. Bussert and Hank Sadowski.

Instructions for Every Case

Special Instructions for Clemency Package ​

Special Instructions for Time Served Requirement

Special Instructions for Non-Violent Offender/History of Violence

Special Instructions for Determining Whether the Sentence Would be Lower Today

All Cases

Drug Cases

Firearms Cases

Immigration Cases