A Maryland criminal conviction has the potential to impact and upend many aspects of your life. Depending on the details surrounding your offense, some of the penalties you face in the aftermath of a criminal conviction may wind up impacting you for years to come. However, if you meet certain eligibility criteria, you may be able to seek post-conviction relief.
Per the Maryland Office of the Public Defender, you may be able to move forward with post-conviction proceedings if certain conditions held true during your trial.
Who is eligible for post-conviction relief
You may be able to pursue post-conviction relief if you received your conviction in a Maryland state court after either pleading guilty or having a judge or jury convict you. You also must either be in the midst of serving a sentence or currently on parole or probation as a result of that conviction. Then, you need to file a petition in the court that issued your conviction within 10 years of the date you received it if you wish to have a hearing. If you qualify, you have a right to one post-conviction hearing.
What remedies are possible through post-conviction relief
Many people pursue post-conviction relief while citing similar circumstances, such as ineffective legal representation or prosecutorial misconduct. If you move forward with a post-conviction hearing, then possible outcomes include a new trial, a new sentence, a modification to your existing sentence or permission to file belated post-trial motions.
In most instances, post-conviction hearings take place after you have already filed an appeal for your conviction. However, failing to appeal your conviction does not necessarily make you ineligible from seeking post-conviction relief.