Miscellaneous amendments to sentencing guidelines
The Sentencing Council holds an annual consultation on miscellaneous amendments in which we consider potential changes to guidelines arising from various sources including case law, changes to legislation and feedback from sentencers.
Following a consultation in 2022, the Council made amendments to a number of sentencing guidelines on 1 April 2023.
The amendments which apply to both the magistrates’ courts and Crown Court, were made to improve clarity and reflect changes in legislation. They include:
- clarification of wording relating to disqualification in magistrates’ court motoring offences guidelines and related explanatory materials;
- changes to the guidelines for criminal damage to take account of the legislative change relating to memorials;
- amendments to the wording regarding minimum sentences in bladed article, drug and burglary offences guidelines; and
- additional wording for the unlawful act manslaughter guideline relating to the required life sentence for an offence committed against an emergency worker.
The second consultation on miscellaneous amendments opened on 7 September and closed on 30 November 2022.
Following a consultation in 2021, the Council made amendments to a number of sentencing guidelines on 1 April 2022.
The amendments relate to:
- breach of a sexual harm prevention order (SHPO): clarifying that when the court is dealing with such a breach, it does not have a standalone power to make a fresh order or to vary the order;
- compensation: adding wording relating to giving reasons if compensation is not awarded in all relevant guidelines;
- confiscation: providing fuller information on confiscation in all relevant guidelines;
- racially or religiously aggravated offences: making the uplift for racial/ religious aggravation a separate step and consistent across guidelines for these offences; and
- domestic abuse overarching guideline: revising the definition of domestic abuse in the light of the Domestic Abuse Act 2021 and expanding it to include a wider range of relationships.
The first consultation on miscellaneous amendments opened on 9 September and closed on 2 December 2021.
To support the guidelines and consultations, the Council publishes a range of documents.
Related documents: Miscellaneous amendments