Wronged Ex-Cons: Why Some Get Payday, Some Don't

By Heather McPherson,  Newser User
Posted Jul 26, 2007 4:25 AM CDT
28 American states currently have no law entitling the exonerated convicts to compensation.   (Shutterstock.com)
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(Newser) – How much is a year of jail time worth if you're falsely convicted? The potential awards vary widely, the American Prospect reports. Some states fix rates, with exonerated Wisconsinites claiming $5,000 per year in the clink while those from Alabama get $50,000. Twenty-two states have no laws guaranteeing redress; in those states the fight is on.

“It’s a crazy patchwork quilt,” said an activist about the varied rules—and absence of same—among states. And with 360 inmates exonerated since 2000, many through improved  DNA testing, expect a torrent of lawsuits and legislation.