Assembly approves bill that would raise payouts for those wrongfully convicted

MADISON — People wrongly convicted of crimes in Wisconsin could claim up to $50,000 for each year spent behind bars under a bipartisan bill Wisconsin's Assembly has approved unanimously.

Such payouts are now capped at $5,000 for each year of incarceration, with a maximum of $25,000. The bill would raise that to $50,000 per year, with an overall limit of $1 million.

The new compensation levels would apply to claims filed by anyone wrongly convicted who was released on or after Jan. 1, 1990. The bill would also provide the wrongly convicted with access to the state's health insurance program and transitional services, like job training and housing.

The Assembly approved the bill 98-0 on Tuesday, February 9th. It goes next to the Wisconsin Senate.