3.850 refers to Florida Rule of Criminal Procedure 3.850. This rule gives people who have pled guilty or who have been convicted of a crime the opportunity for relief in certain circumstances. Relief from the guilty plea or conviction is not automatic, however. Even if a person qualifies under Florida Rule of Criminal Procedure 3.850, the person must make a motion to the court requesting the relief the law allows.

Grounds for a 3.850 Motion

A person sentenced for a crime in Florida could file a 3.850 motion if one of the following is true:

  • The court’s judgment or sentence violates the Constitution or laws of the United States or the State of Florida
  • The court did not have jurisdiction to enter the judgment
  • The court did not have jurisdiction to impose the sentence
  • The sentence imposed by the court exceeds the maximum sentence allowed by law
  • The person’s plea was involuntary
  • There is another legal reason to seek relief

If you think you may have reason to ask the court for relief from your judgment or sentence, you must act quickly. In most cases, you have two years from the date of the court’s final judgment to file a 3.850 motion.

How to Make a 3.850 Motion

Your motion, which is made under oath, must include:

  • A description of the court’s judgment or sentence and the court that issued the judgment or sentence
  • Whether any appeals have been filed, and if so whether any have been decided
  • Whether any previous post-conviction relief motions have been filed, and if so, how they were decided. Additionally, you must describe why the information in this 3.850 motion was not included in previous motions.
  • The relief you are seeking
  • A statement of facts that you are relying on to support your motion

Once you file a 3.850 motion, your motion and court file should be immediately delivered to a judge. The judge will then decide whether your motion conclusively shows that you are entitled to relief or not. If your motion shows that you may be entitled to post-conviction relief, the court will require the state’s attorney to respond to the motion. A hearing date may be set.

Ultimately, if the court decides that you are entitled to post-conviction relief, the court may vacate and set aside the judgment, grant you a new trial, or correct your sentence.

A 3.850 motion is too important to handle on your own. You have a lot at stake, and you deserve every protection allowed by law. Please call or start a live chat with us today to schedule a meeting with an experienced criminal defense lawyer so that you can learn more about your rights and whether a 3.850 motion may be useful for you.