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Downward Departure

Downward Departure

Definition

Sentencing a criminal defendant to a term less than the statutory minimum set by applicable sentencing guidelines. Typical reasons for downward departures include entering a plea agreement and cooperating with the government, accepting responsibility for the crime, committing the crime under coercion or duress, playing a minor role in the crime, having a history of charitable or good works, having advanced age, or incarceration negatively impacting dependent children or elderly parents.

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