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What is included in an example leniency letter?

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Quick Answer

A leniency letter should include positive traits and attributes about the offender as well as how the sentence of penalty for the crime could adversely affect the offender's life, according to Sample Letter HQ. Additionally, the offender should avoid trying to justify the offense or crime.

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Full Answer

When addressing the letter, writers should use "Dear Honorable" followed by the judge's name. The first section of the letter should establish an honest and sincere tone. While the writer should avoid trying to justify the crime, including a description of the circumstances behind it is acceptable, as Sample Letter HQ explains.

The middle section of the letter should include details about the offender as a person. It is important to share positive traits and personal goals for the future, according to Sample Letter HQ. It is equally important to do so with prudence.

To conclude a letter asking for leniency, writers should convey to the judge how the sentence, penalty or fine could impact the offender's life. If it is a first offense, the judge may find the punishment more detrimental than helpful depending on the nature of the crime, which may lead the judge to issue a fine with a stiff warning. This is more likely to occur in not only first time offenses but those that lack any bodily harm, as Sample Letter HQ explains. When concluding the letter, the writer should thank the judge for her time and consideration.

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