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Federal Sentencing: Maximizing Client Outcomes From the Investigation to Post-Sentencing

(528 reviews)

Produced on May 17, 2016

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Course Information

Time 1h 29m
Difficulty Advanced
Topics covered in this course: Criminal Public Interest

Course Description

Ninety-seven percent of charged criminal cases in the United States are resolved via guilty pleas, and the vast majority of the remaining cases, those which go to trial, also result in guilty verdicts. Thus, as the United States Supreme Court stated in Lafler v. Cooper, the criminal justice system has become "for the most part a system of pleas, not a system of trials." Whether one is convicted via a guilty plea or after trial, counsel will need to address complicated issues surrounding the imposition of sentence.

This webcast focuses on sentencing in the federal system and addresses key components of that process, beginning with the negotiation of the plea agreement, then the guilty plea, the interactions with the Probation Department, the court, the Bureau of Prisons if the client is sentenced to jail time, and the potential collateral consequences of conviction. What we hope viewers will take away from the course is that advocacy on behalf of clients begins from the very first moment a lawyer is retained, and continues throughout the representation, with every person and entity involved in the process.  


Learning Objectives:

I.     Recognize the need to focus on sentencing from the very beginning of a case

II.    Explore drug or alcohol abuse, mental health issues, and family circumstances with the client, which may lead to reduced sentences 

III.   Understand the importance of retaining experts to analyze loss in white collar cases 

IV.   Know the plea and sentencing practices in the particular jurisdiction and how the details of a plea agreement can drive sentencing outcomes

V.    Learn the key role of mitigating factors in an "advisory" federal sentencing regime  

VI.   Deal with the probation officer throughout the process

VII.  Review sentencing submissions to ensure they are carefully written with consideration of who the judge is

VIII. Consider appropriate prison placements for court recommendations 

IX.   Understand the sentencing of corporations and its impact on future business operations

X.    Prepare for potential collateral consequences of a conviction, including professional licensure, deportation and debarment from government contracting

Credit Information

After completing this course, Lawline will report your attendance information to {{ accredMasterState.state.name }}. Please ensure your license number is filled out in your profile to ensure timely reporting. For more information, see our {{ accredMasterState.state.name }} CLE Requirements page . After completing this course, {{ accredMasterState.state.name }} attorneys self-report their attendance and CLE compliance. For more information on how to report your CLE courses, see our {{ accredMasterState.state.name }} CLE Requirements FAQ .


Marjorie J. Peerce

Ballard Spahr LLP

Marjorie J. Peerce is a litigator, with a practice focus on white collar criminal defense, regulatory matters, and complex civil litigation. In her more than 30 years practice, she has handled matters across the criminal and regulatory spectrum.


Ms. Peerce appears in New York state and federal courts, as well as in federal districts around the country. She has handled criminal and regulatory investigations concerning, for example, violations of the Internal Revenue Code, securities fraud, (including Bitcoins) the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), the Bank Secrecy Act, government contract procurement and subsidy fraud, mail fraud, bribery, accounting fraud, government contract procurement, government subsidy fraud, immigration fraud, health care fraud, environmental matters, commodities fraud, computer fraud and hacking, and criminal customs investigations. She has handled a significant number of matters with the Securities and Exchange Commission, as well as with FINRA and the CFTC. She has handled numerous matters with the New York Attorney General in a variety of areas. She also regularly represents individuals in myriad matters in the Criminal and Supreme Courts in New York City.


In her civil practice, Ms. Peerce has represented defendants in securities class actions, financial institutions in commercial and real estate disputes, employees involved in noncompete disputes, general commercial litigation, and matters for several major real estate companies in New York City. She has represented doctors under investigation with the Office of Professional Medical Conduct in New York, as well as lawyers with disciplinary matters pending before the Departmental Disciplinary Committees, state employees with the New York State Department of Professional Discipline, and a former state employee in a matter with the New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics.


Ms. Peerce is past President of the New York Council of Defense Lawyers, a premier defense lawyers' organization composed of 240 of New York's preeminent white collar lawyers. As the past Chair of the Council's Sentencing Guidelines Committee, she prepared regular submissions to the U.S. Sentencing Commission on the Guidelines and testified before the Commission on two occasions. Ms. Peerce is the current Co-Chair of the Sentencing Committee of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, is on the national Steering Committee of Clemency Project 2014, as well as on the American Bar Association Task Force to Reform the Economic Crimes Guidelines.

Peter D. Hardy

Ballard Spahr LLP

Peter Hardy advises corporations and individuals in a range of industries against allegations of misconduct— including tax fraud, financial crimes, money laundering, mortgage fraud and lending law violations, securities fraud, health care fraud, public corruption, identity theft and data breach.


Mr. Hardy has extensive trial and appellate court experience. He oversees internal investigations, advises in potential disclosures to the Internal Revenue Service, and has litigated complex criminal matters at the trial and appellate levels. He also counsels clients through every stage of a tax controversy – from audit through administrative appeal to litigation and collection.


Before entering private practice, Mr. Hardy spent more than a decade as a federal prosecutor. He served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Philadelphia, where he focused on fraud and tax cases. He also served as a trial attorney for the Department of Justice’s Tax Division in Washington, D.C., where he tried cases in a number of federal districts and helped write the Department's Criminal Tax Manual.


A national thought leader on the subject of criminal tax law, Mr. Hardy is the author of Criminal Tax, Money Laundering, and Bank Secrecy Act Litigation, a well-reviewed and comprehensive legal treatise on the litigation of criminal tax, money laundering, and Bank Secrecy Act cases, published by Bloomberg BNA. He also serves as an adjunct professor at Villanova University School of Law, where he teaches a class on criminal and civil tax penalties in the graduate law program.



Excellent speakers. They have a wealth of experience

Sean H.

very useful

Gregory N.

Very Practical Advise.

David D.

Excellent !!

Roxanne F.

Good!! Very informative and experienced speakers.

Joy V.

Very well organized! Excellent.

Patricia C.

Excellent, practical

Michael T.

knowledgeable presenters, thorough course.

Richard m.

The tandem approach made it easy to listen to and the speakers were clear and provided practical advice based on real life experience

Bobby B.

Enjoyed this presentation

James M.

Spectacular work!

William H.

Both speaker provide great information in complex area. Great Job

Julie A. B.

Enormously engaging.

Jack "Steve" P.

Good material - thx!

John D.

excellent review of federal criminal defense subjects and tactics

John C.

I enjoyed this program.

Anthony W.

Very informative.

Steven K.

One of the better programs I have listened to.

Michael C.

Good webcast

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