Abstract: Federal prisoners who wish to mount a collateral challenge to their conviction or sentence are generally prohibited from making their claim via the writ of habeas corpus and are forced to proceed under a similar procedure set out in 28 U.S.C. § 2255. After the passage of the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA), which added significant restrictions to § 2255 review but not to habeas review, that prohibition can be the difference between freedom and incarceration for a federal prisoner serving a term of incarceration based on an illegal conviction or sentence. There is, however, a provision within § 2255, known as the savings clause, that contains an exception to the habeas bar where the remedy provided by § 2255 is “inadequate or ineffective to test the legality of the detention.” The courts of appeals have split on the proper test to govern the application of the savings clause. This Note examines each of the tests that has been adopted by the circuits and shows how each is problematic when analyzed in light of the text of § 2255, the legislative intent behind the passage of the AEDPA, and the constitutional considerations inherent in post-conviction review. This Note goes on to posit a new test for the application of the savings clause that more effectively navigates those competing interests.
2015-2016 Board of Editors
We are pleased to announce the Board of Editors for the 2015-2015 academic year.
BCLR Latest Issue: Vol. LVI No. 3
The Boston College Law Review is pleased to announce our latest publication , the May 2015 issue. The current issue is featured on […]
BCLR Releases Vol. LV No. 3
The Boston College Law Review is pleased to publish the May 2014 issue. Here are summaries of this issue’s Articles and Notes: […]