How long does the clemency application process take?
For federal cases, it can take anywhere between two to seven years before a person is told whether a commutation request has been granted or denied. For those seeking federal pardons, the application process will typically take at least 18 months to two years because the Office of the Pardon Attorney will typically do a full background check and investigation when a person requests a pardon, and this investigation takes between 18 months and two years to complete. In the states, the application review process for commutations and pardons typically takes between six months to two years before the prisoner receives a decision on the request. At the state and federal level, many clemency/parole boards are backlogged with requests for commutations and pardons, so applicants may have a lengthy wait.