Legal Dictionary

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Enhancement

An enhancement is an additional prison term that is added to the base term. Enhancements are generally of two types: conduct enhancements (also referred to as specific enhancements), which go to the nature of the offense, and prior conviction or prison term enhancements (priors), which go to the nature of the offender's criminal history.

Examples of conduct enhancements (or specific enhancements) include: personally inflicting great bodily injury (3 years pursuant to California Penal Code 12022.7); and personally using a knife (1 year pursuant to California Penal Code 12022). Examples of prior conviction enhancements include: prison priors (1 year for every separate prison term served by the defendant pursuant to California Penal Code 667.5( b)); and serious felony (adds 5 years for every prior serious felony when convicted of a new serious felony pursuant to California Penal Code 667(a)). A serious felony is any felony listed in California Penal Code 1192.7(c) or 1192.8.