What is a Mandatory Minimum Sentence?

Sentencing Guidelines- Massachusetts

Q: What is a Mandatory Minimum Sentence?

In Massachusetts, certain offenses carry statutory "minimum mandatory sentences."  That means that if convicted, the defendant cannot be sentenced to anything less that the mandatory minimum jail, state prison sentence, or fine required by the governing statute. The only exceptions are "alternative dispositions" for operating under the influence charges, and in very limited circumstances for drug offenses, based on the nature and mitigating factors involved, in which case a judge may be permitted to sentence the defendant to 2/3 of the mandatory minimum sentence.

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