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Substantial Implementation


SORNA Substantial Implementation

Training and Technical Assistance. The SMART Office can provide training and technical assistance to states, tribes and territories working toward or maintaining substantial implementation of SORNA. Assistance can be provided onsite, via conference calls or webinar and through training events. To request technical assistance from the SMART Office, please fill out this request form and email it to [email protected] or call 202-514-4689 for more information.

Policy and Procedure Assistance. The SMART Office's senior policy advisors are available to review legislation and court decisions to determine if they impact a jurisdiction’s SORNA implementation status. Contact your jurisdiction’s senior policy advisor for assistance or email [email protected] or call 202-514-4689. 

Substantial Implementation Review

During a substantial implementation review, the SMART Office will review the jurisdiction’s statutes, codes, policies, procedures, manuals and forms that relate to sex offender registration and public notification. To prepare for the review, the SMART Office recommends that the jurisdiction use the following checklist to review its program and gather materials to submit to SMART for review.

Checklist. This checklist (PDF) is a tool to help registration jurisdictions as they work to substantially implement SORNA. It is not a definitive guide to SORNA's full implementation requirements. Jurisdictions are advised to consult with the SMART Office throughout their implementation process to ensure that their laws, policies, procedures and practices conform with the entirety of what SORNA requires.

Submitting Substantial Implementation Information for Review. A complete substantial implementation package comprises many documents. The information can be submitted in hard copy or electronically. (Having electronic copies of statutes, codes, policy and procedures manuals, and forms is helpful for quickly relaying comments.) Please include the checklist, with references to where specific information can be found. If submitting materials in hard copy, we recommend compiling the information in a binder with the checklist and a table of contents. Electronic materials can be sent to your jurisdiction’s senior policy advisor. Hard copy materials can be sent to―

SMART Office
Office of Justice Programs
U.S. Department of Justice
810 Seventh St. NW
Washington, DC 20531

For States With Tribes Located Within Their Boundaries. Under the Adam Walsh Act, designated federally recognized Indian tribes may elect to become SORNA registration and notification jurisdictions or to delegate the responsibility to the state in which they are located (34 U.S.C. § 20929). If a state has a tribe or tribes located within its boundaries that have elected to implement SORNA, the SMART Office also requests that the state submit the following information with its substantial implementation package:

  • An explanation of the state's working relationships with SORNA tribes in the state
  • The name and contact information of the state point of contact
  • Any information-sharing arrangements, including DNA, fingerprint and palm print collection and submission; NCIC submission; criminal history and corrections information
  • Any memoranda of understanding/agreement or cooperative agreements with tribes

For Tribes. For those federally recognized Indian tribes that have elected to be SORNA registration and notification jurisdictions, the SMART Office requests the following additional information:

  • An explanation of the working relationship(s) with state(s) in which the tribe is located
  • The name and contact information of the tribal point of contact
  • Any information-sharing arrangements, including DNA, fingerprint and palm print collection; NCIC submission; criminal history and corrections information
  • Any memoranda of understanding/agreement or cooperative agreements

SORNA Technology Solutions

As provided under the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006, the SMART Office provides several no-cost technology solutions for information sharing among jurisdictions, registry information management and to share information with the public.

SORNA Exchange Portal

SORNA requires jurisdictions to share information about sex offenders who are relocating between jurisdictions or required to register in more than one jurisdiction. The SORNA Exchange Portal was developed by the U.S. Department of Justice to help jurisdictions efficiently share information. Each registration jurisdiction has access to its own individual site and information can be exchanged through a variety of means, including discussion boards, document and file sharing, event calendars, historical statutes databases and offender relocation tasks. To access the portal, you must have a username and password. Email [email protected] to request a username and password. Once you receive your username and password, you can access the portal at https://portal.nsopw.gov. See the SORNA Exchange Portal Fact Sheet for more information.


The Sex Offender Registry Tool (SORT) is a sex offender management application provided by the SMART Office at no cost to assist states in implementing the SORNA registry system requirements of the Adam Walsh Act. SORT was designed to make the registry setup and maintenance process as efficient and effective as possible. SORT serves a dual purpose: It functions as the state-level administrative registry system and provides local registration agencies with their own specialized public sex offender registry websites. Watch an introductory video or see the SORT Fact Sheet for more information.


The Tribe and Territory Sex Offender Registry System (TTSORS) was created to assist the 199 Indian tribes that have elected to implement SORNA and the principal U.S. territories by effectively removing the technical difficulties of implementing SORNA requirements. TTSORS is multipurpose: It functions as the administrative registry system, provides the public sex offender registry website and allows records to be submitted directly to the National Sex Offender Registry. TTSORS is hosted and managed for the jurisdiction, so there’s no IT infrastructure burden and doesn’t require IT staff to manage.

Dru Sjodin National Sex Offender Public Website

The U.S. Department of Justice’s Dru Sjodin National Sex Offender Public Website (NSOPW.gov) provides the public with free, immediate access to all jurisdictions’ sex offender registries—all with one query from a single website. NSOPW.gov is the only government site to link public state, territory and tribal sex offender registries in one national search site. NSOPW also includes a sexual abuse education and prevention section, to help the public learn about sexual abuse prevention and ways to protect themselves and loved ones from potential victimization, and how to respond if abuse occurs. NSOPW also has a free app that users can download to their mobile device to search for registered sex offenders nearby. See the NSOPW Fact Sheet for more information.

Reallocation of Byrne/JAG Grant Funds

The Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006 established a penalty for jurisdictions that failed to substantially implement the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act by July 27, 2011, and for any year thereafter. If a jurisdiction has not substantially implemented SORNA by July 27, as determined annually by the SMART Office, the jurisdiction's next fiscal year Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant will be reduced by 10 percent.

The Adam Walsh Act further provided that funding penalty amounts shall be reallocated to eligible jurisdictions that have substantially implemented SORNA or may be reallocated to a jurisdiction from which they were withheld to be used solely to work toward SORNA implementation. Jurisdictions can apply to have their funds reinstated for the sole purpose of implementing SORNA. Reallocation requests must be submitted in writing to the SMART Office, following this guidance.

The following jurisdictions applied for reallocation of the funding penalty in 2023 to work solely toward furthering SORNA implementation activities and efforts: Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, West Virginia and Wisconsin.