What’s the Difference Between Parole and Probation?

These two types of court supervision have many things in common, including the fact that they both begin with the same consonant. Both could be prison alternatives, both come with conditions, and both types of violators face stiff penalties. So, it’s little wonder that so many people are confused about the difference between parole and probation.

United Bonding Company (bail bond near me) is a great place to go with questions like these. Our experienced bonding agents can do more than get you out of jail fast. We serve clients throughout western Tennessee and have access to numerous resources for  you and your family about not only bail bonds in Memphis, but also the criminal justice process in Shelby County.

Some Parole Basics

In a nutshell, people go on parole after they have been to prison.

Sometimes, parole, or supervised release, is part of the original sentence. For example, a judge might sentence “Joe” to three years in prison and two years of supervised release. Other times, parole is a form of early release. “Joe’s” good behavior might trigger his early release from prison, but he must remain on parole until that original sentence expired.

There are also different forms of parole. Many former inmates spend time in a secure halfway house immediately after their release from prison. That arrangement obviously protects the public, but it also helps the defendant. A person with no job, no place to live, and no experience paying bills will have a hard time making it right after release and these residences provide the help and support required to make a positive transition back into society.

Some Probation Basics

Again, in a nutshell, judges place defendants on probation instead of sending them to jail or prison.

Like parole, probation comes with conditions. Different courts have different conditions for different offenses. Some common ones include:

  • No problems with the law, other than minor traffic tickets, while on probation,
  • Pay fines, court costs, probation fees, and other expenses,
  • Attend classes, like DUI victim impact panels or anger management classes, and
  • Stay busy (work and/or attend school full time).

If people who are on parole or probation violate their conditions of release, and the state of Tennessee proves them guilty in court, the judge has several options. Some judges order defendants to serve brief stints in jail or prison as a condition of reinstatement. Other times, the judge revokes parole or probation and hands down a long term incarceration sentence. Or, the judge may allow the defendant to remain free, but impose additional conditions or extend the period of supervised release.

At United Bonding Company we know that the best way set yourself up for a successful probation or parole is to be released from jail on bond. We work hard to secure you fast and easy release from jail. Call us for a free consultation 24/7 at (901) 577-1138 if you need to get out of jail or you have questions like the difference between parole and probation. United Bonding Company is a member of Tennessee Association of Professional Bail Agents and also provide bail bonds for the Shelby County Juvenile Court. For more information about the bail and bail bonds process click here: https://bailbondmemphis.com/bail-bonds-process/.


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