Applicable Form of Executive Clemency: Commutation of Sentence

Eligibility Requirements

All applicants for a pardon extraordinary must both wait the required waiting period before applying for a pardon and have a conviction that falls under the Board of Pardon’s jurisdiction. Both are explained in detail below.

Waiting period:

(1) If the applicant was convicted of a "crime of violence" (determined by Minn. Stat. 624.712), ten years must have elapsed since the sentence expired. During that time the person must not have been convicted of any other crime (felony drug convictions are considered crimes of violence).

(2) Applicants not convicted of crimes of violence may apply for a pardon five years after the expiration of their sentences. During that time they must not have been convicted of any other crime (including misdemeanors and misdemeanor traffic violations such as DWI).

If an applicant commits a new crime during the waiting period, the waiting period is reset and starts over again from the time the applicant is discharged from probation for the new crime.

Even though the board only has jurisdiction over Minnesota criminal convictions, a conviction in any jurisdiction, including other states or foreign countries, will be considered in determining the waiting period. The waiting period must be fully completed at the time you appear before the Board unless a waiver is granted.

Minnesota conviction:

The Board's jurisdiction extends to Minnesota criminal convictions that meet two requirements:

(1) The offense for which the pardon is sought must be a criminal conviction. In Minnesota, a "petty misdemeanor" is not a crime. Likewise, matters which were dismissed by a stay of adjudication, diversion program, or Minn. Stat. 152.18 dismissal are not criminal convictions. The Board does not consider civil matters such as tax liabilities, civil commitment, harassment restraining orders, or the like.

(2) The conviction must have taken place in a Minnesota state district court.

The Minnesota Board of Pardons consists of three members -- Minnesota’s Governor, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and Attorney General.

Application Process: Application forms are found online here, or obtained upon request by contacting:
Minnesota Board of Pardons
1450 Energy Park Drive, Suite 200
St. Paul, MN 55108-5219
Tel: (651) 361-7171

Fax: (651) 603-6770
TTY: (651) 643-3589

Completed forms should be submitted to the same address.

Frequently asked questions are answered here.

You must submit the correct Application for Commutation.

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You are on an unofficial webpage, not affiliated with the official state webpage. Every effort has been made to make this information accurate and up-to-date. Changes occur frequently and errors are inevitable. We would appreciate learning of any errors or inaccuracies. You may write to info@cjpf.org.

CJPF is unable to answer questions regarding this state's clemency program. CJPF cannot provide legal assistance and does not take on individual clients. CJPF cannot provide applicants for clemency any assistance. Do not send clemency materials to CJPF. Please do not write or call asking for assistance.


Last updated: 09/04/18