According to the compassionate release law, a prisoner can be granted early release from prison for special reasons, such as childbirth or a terminal illness, etc. Even elderly and disabled prisoners or prisoners suffering from debilitating diseases such as AIDS can be released early from prison on compassionate grounds. However, the compassionate release of an inmate is difficult to sanction and requires compliance with strict eligibility requirements.

The individual must be able to show that he or she is truly suffering from a debilitating or terminal illness and has only six months to live at the most. The person must also show that there is a private nursing home, hospital or medical institute where they will receive appropriate and adequate medical care once they are released from prison. The individual must confirm that the members of their immediate family or relative have an ample supply of funds to meet their medical needs. The individual must also assure and convince the Department of Corrections that even if he manages to survive beyond the foreseen period of 6 months, he will not violate the law or do any harm to society.

In most states, the court clearly specifies a sentence for an inmate and includes the exact period of time the inmate must serve for any offense. The court also specifies whether the inmate is eligible for parole or not. If the prisoner has committed a felony and is sentenced to life imprisonment, then there is no scope for parole or parole and this sentence is known as “life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.”

If the inmate is not sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole, then in that case, the director of the Department of Corrections generally asks a judge to recall the inmate’s incarceration, and compassionate release is granted for that inmate.

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