Murder sentencing consultation

Closed 4 Mar 2024

Opened 27 Nov 2023


Murder is the most serious crime a person can commit, and we must ensure that in every case the sentence is commensurate with the severity of the crime. Everyone should feel safe in their own home and our sentencing framework must reflect the seriousness of violence and abuse which is committed by those closest to them.

The Government has already introduced legislation to give domestic murders specialist consideration in the sentencing framework. These measures were announced earlier this year, in the Governments response to the independent Domestic Homicide Sentencing Review undertaken by Clare Wade KC. These changes mark a step change in the way in which our sentencing framework responds to cases of domestic murder.

However, we recognise that there are issues which would benefit from further consideration, beyond the recommendations made in the review. That is why we also committed to launch this public consultation, in order to ensure that all options for reform in this area have been fully explored.

This consultation is therefore seeking views on a minimum term starting point for (i) cases of murder preceded by controlling or coercive behaviour against the murder victim, and (ii) all murders committed with a knife or other weapon.

The consultation is aimed at all those with an interest in or views on the subject covered by this paper in England and Wales. The consultation will be open for 14 weeks and will close on 4 March 2024.


  • Citizens
  • Legal professionals
  • Judiciary
  • Police
  • Prosecutors
  • Victims
  • Legal professional bodies


  • Courts
  • Criminal justice