Bureau of Prisons – Administrative Remedies

A Necessity for Relief

The Administrative Remedy system is an idea that pervades throughout most all prison systems within the United States. It was created to keep prisons in compliance with federal laws which protect inmates against 8th Amendment violations for cruel and unusual punishment. The implementation also gives the appearance that a prison will hear and resolve grievances from its inmates.

This appearance is usually an illusion. Administrative Remedies work very infrequently and, if they do, it is only because that institution was so far out of legal compliance that a change needed to occur in order to prevent serious repercussions from the judicial and regulatory government above it.

A Necessary Evil

It is understandable why the federal court system requires these remedies to be tried and exhausted. An attempt must be made by the inmate to resolve his or her complaints within the prison system before getting the courts involved. Otherwise the court system would be filled with requests for small things like more toilet paper or other things of equally low priority (to a federal judge).

However, just because the need for remedy attempts exist, there is no relief that normally comes from them. The Bureau of Prisons is especially adept at stalling, delaying, ‘losing’ forms, and pushing time-frames so the inmate appears to have not properly used the remedy system and therefore cannot file a lawsuit.

That is correct. All administrative remedies must be completed within guidelines set by the Bureau of Prisons before legal action can formally be taken. If the BOP can disrupt this process, it can create an endless cycle of remedies that traps an inmate in bureaucratic red-tape so legal remedies can’t be sought. Or, at least, that seems to be the game.

There is Hope

There is an upside, though. Knowing the exact laws which tell the BOP how these remedies must be processed gives a legally sound shortcut through the games. I critical point in establishing a federal lawsuits is finishing these remedies, and PCR Consultants can show you and your inmate-loved-one just how to do it and avoid wasting precious weeks haggling with a system that is built to scramble the remedy system.