Constructive Amendment Law and Legal Definition

A constructive amendment occurs when "the terms of the indictment are in effect altered by the presentation of evidence and jury instructions which so modify essential elements of an offense charged that there is a substantial likelihood that the defendant may have been convicted of an offense other than that charged in the indictment." United States v. Hemphill, 76 Fed. Appx. 6, 19 (6th Cir. Ohio 2003)