Federal Bureau of Prisons
First Step Act
The First Step Act or FSA (Public Law 115-39) passed on December 18, 2018. It requires the Attorney General (AG) to develop a risk and needs assessment system for BOP to assess the recidivism risk and criminogenic needs of all federal prisoners and to place prisoners in recidivism reducing programs and productive activities to address their needs and reduce this risk. Federal regulations regarding time credits are final and are published in the Federal Register.
The First Step Act is significant legislation that affects BOP inmates and their families. This page provides an overview of how the Act affects reductions in recidivism, incentives for success, confinement, correctional reforms, sentencing reforms, and oversight.
Attorney General Reports
Under the First Step Act, the Attorney General is required to report to Congress on the activities undertaken, and accomplishments reached, in carrying out the law. This page makes those reports available to the public.
PATTERN Risk Assessment
PATTERN is a tool that measures an inmate's risk of recidivism and provides them opportunities to reduce their score. This page provides resources that are used to calculate those recidivism risk scores and levels.
Needs Assessment & Programs
This page provides resources that explain how inmate needs are assessed, lists FSA-related reentry programs to meet those needs, and provides information on how you can submit an idea for a program.
This page lists BOP policies that were created, or updated, to address requirements under the First Step Act.
Frequently Asked Questions
This page provides general information about the First Step Act, which were gathered from frequently asked questions, and organized by topic.