New custody credits rule for California jail sentences after October 1, 2011

“Susie” was sentenced to 30 days in a California jail for disorderly conduct.  Susie will not actually serve 30 days in jail if she is eligible for custody credits and she “earns” them.  So how do we know when Susie will be released from custody if it’s not 30 days?  In order to figure out when Susie will be released you must know how “custody credits” work.

Custody credits function similar to vacation time at work. For those that are lucky enough to get paid vacation, the usual scenario is that for every “x” amount of days worked you get “y” amount of vacation days.  Custody credits work the same way in California.  In California, most jail inmates can “earn” custody credits toward the completion of their jail sentences.  This means that for every “x” number of days served in jail, Susie gets “y” number of days of custody credit.  These custody credits are deducted from Susie’s total sentence as if she actually served those days, even though she did not.

Currently, California jail inmates, if eligible, can earn 2 days of custody credits for every 6 actual days served.  (These rules do not apply to state prison cases.)  Stated another way, a California jail inmate can earn 6 days of total credit for every 4 days he or she actually serves in custody.  This means that California jail inmates currently serve 2/3 of their sentence when given full custody credits.   This rule changes as of October 1, 2011.

As of October 1, 2011, eligible California jail inmates will earn 2 days credit for every 4 days actually served,   This means that California jail inmates will effectively serve 1/2 of their sentence (as opposed to 2/3 under the old rule), when given full custody credits. This new rule will not be “retroactive,” meaning that crimes committed before the law takes effect on October 1, 2011 will be subject to the old 2/3 rule, whereas crimes committed on or after October 1, 2011 will be subject to the new 1/2 rule.

If you or a loved one is facing criminal charges and would like to speak to an attorney about the case, please do not hesitate to call The X-Law Group, P.C.  The attorneys at The X-Law Group, P.C. handle criminal defense matters in all of Southern California, including Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego, Ventura, Riverside and San Bernardino counties.  We offer free consultations and affordable payment plans.  Give us a call at 213-223-2232 and visit our website at http://www.thexlawgroup.com/.  We look forward to helping you.

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