A pre-sentence report is an independent psychological evaluation that is used to assist the court in making informed sentencing decisions. 

Pre-sentence assessments generally address the following areas: 

  • Background of defendant, and any personal underlaying psychological issues that may have led to the offending; 
  • Psychometric testing (a way to measure mental ability and behavioural style); 
  • Investigation into the context/circumstances of the allegations/actions; 
  • Assessment on potential to re-offend; 
  • Consideration of suitability for treatment; 
  • Practical recommendations for ongoing management, specialist support and treatment. 

 Ordinarily the court will rely heavily on such a report when making a decision regarding appropriate sentence.  

The benefits of having a presentence report at sentencing include: 

  • Provides the Court with a greater understanding of the nature of the offending; 
  • Independently sets out mitigating factors for the Court to consider; 
  • Provides recommendations for rehabilitation moving forward.  

As special criminal lawyers, our office highly recommends you obtain a presentence report prior to sentencing.  

Our team specialise in criminal defence. Our role is to sit down with you and work out the strategy that will get you the best possible result. If you have any questions about this article or any other topic of law, please call our team of experts on 1300 066 669.