Parole & Probation

Being under some type of correctional community supervision is usually required to be released from prison or jail, and can sometimes be offered by a criminal court judge in place of incarceration. In the PAROLE & PROBATION CHAPTER, you will learn that there are many types of supervision in California — state parole, county probation, mandatory supervision, PRCS, federal probation, federal supervised release, and federal parole. This chapter will help you understand what it means to be on community supervision, what rules you have to follow, and all the rights you have as a person in reentry.

DISCLAIMER – YOUR RESPONSIBILITY WHEN USING THIS GUIDE: When putting together the Roadmap to Reentry: A California Legal Guide, we did our best to give you useful and accurate information. However, the laws change frequently and are subject to differing interpretations. We do not always have the resources to make changes to this informational material every time the law changes. If you use information from the Roadmap to Reentry legal guide, it is your responsibility to make sure that the law has not changed and applies to your particular situation. If you are incarcerated, most of the materials you need should be available in your institution’s law library. The Roadmap to Reentry guide is not intending to give legal advice, but rather legal information. No attorney-client relationship is created by using any information in this guide. You should always consult your own attorney if you need legal advice specific to your situation.



  1. What is community supervision?
  2. Why is it important to know what type of supervision I am on, and the rules I must follow?
  3. What are the main types of supervision in California?
  4. What is the difference between the state and federal systems?
  5. I’m not sure what type of supervision I am on. How do I find out?
  6. Key Terms in the Parole & Probation Chapter

  7. State parole

    1. Basics of State Parole

    2. After Release: What to Expect in Your First Days Out on State Parole

    3. Length of State Parole

    4. Getting Off State Parole

    5. Conditions of State Parole

    6. How to Challenge State Parole Conditions

    7. Transfer Locations on State Parole

    8. Your Rights as a Parolee with a Disability

    9. State Parole Violations & Revocations

  8. COUNTY-Level Community Supervision: PROBATION, PRCS, and Mandatory Supervision

    1. What is county probation?
    2. How did California’s “Realignment” law change California’s county-run probation System?
    3. What types of supervision now fall under the control of county probation after realignment?
    4. Informal Probation (a.k.a. Summary Probation or Court Probation)

    5. Formal Probation

    6. Post-Release Community Supervision (PRCS)

    7. Mandatory supervision

    8. Violations & revocations of Formal probation, Informal probation, & mandatory supervision

  9. Transferring States While under Community Supervision

    1. How do I transfer states while I am under community supervision—such as state parole, probation, PRCS, OR mandatory supervision?
    2. I am a 290 sex offender registrant under community supervision, and I want to transfer to another state. Are there special rules that apply to my transfer request?
  10. Federal community supervision: federal probation

    1. Basics of Federal Probation

    2. After Release: What to Expect in Your First Days Out on Federal Probation

    3. Length of Federal Probation

    4. Conditions of Federal Probation

    5. Violations & Revocations—For BOTH Federal Probation and Supervised Release

    6. Disabilities & Federal Probation

    7. Transfer Locations on Federal Probation, Federal Supervised Release, or Federal Parole


    1. Basics of Supervised Release

    2. After Release: What to Expect in Your First Days Out on Supervised Release

    3. Length of Supervised Release

    4. Conditions of Supervised Release

    5. Transfer Locations on Supervised Release

    6. Violations and Revocations — For Both Federal Probation and Supervised Release

    7. Disabilities & Supervised Release

  12. Federal community supervision: federal parolE

    1. Basics of Federal Parole

    2. Before Release: What to Know about Getting Released onto Federal Parole

    3. After Release: What to Expect in Your First Days Out on Federal Parole

    4. Length of Federal Parole

    5. Conditions of Federal Parole

    6. Transferring Federal Parole

    7. Violations & Revocation of Federal Parole

    8. Disability Rights for People on All Types of Federal Supervision