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Eric Schneiderman to introduce 'unjust imprisonment Act'

Cyril Josh Barker | 2/20/2014, 2:19 p.m.

Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman announced that he will propose legislation that revises Section 8-b of the New York State Court of Claims Act, which allows people who are wrongfully convicted of a crime, imprisoned and subsequently had their convictions overturned to present a claim for damages against the state. The attorney general’s proposed legislation, the Unjust Imprisonment Act, would remove unjust and burdensome provisions from current law—barriers that can preclude people who were wrongfully convicted and imprisoned from recovering damages from the state of New York.

Adopted in 1984 and updated in 2007, the current law can prevent certain people—including many who have falsely confessed—from recovering damages from the state after having been wrongfully convicted and incarcerated. The proposed legislation allows those who can prove their actual innocence, even after pleading guilty, to pursue a claim.