What Is a Parole Suitability Hearing?

At Lessem, Newstat & Tooson, LLP, we proudly represent clients on parole in a wide range of legal matters. One of the most common matters clients have us handle on their behalf is the parole suitability hearing. This important hearing is overseen by the Board of Parole Hearings and determines if an inmate should be released from prison.

Parole suitability hearings generally occur in-person at the prison where the inmate is held. However, inmates serving a California prison sentence in another state has the option of conducting the hearing via telephone or video-conference. A two or three-person panel consisting of commissioners and a deputy commissioner will direct the hearing.

Which Inmates Are Eligible for Parole Suitability Hearing?

The Board of Parole Hearings will hear cases from the following types of inmates who have been sentenced to long prison terms:

  • Inmates Serving Life Sentences: Inmates who are sentenced to life with the possibility of parole can request a hearing after they have served a specific amount of their court-imposed sentence.
  • Inmates Serving Life for a Nonviolent Crime: Under California’s Three Strikes Law, inmates who have been sentenced to life for nonviolent offenses are eligible for a hearing after serving a certain amount of time based on their commitment offense.
  • Youth Offenders: If an inmate was under the age of 26 at the time of their criminal offense, and they have served a minimum of 15, 20, or 25 years of continuous incarceration, they may be eligible for a youth offender hearing.
  • Elder Inmates: If an inmate is older than 60 and has served 25 years of continuous incarceration, they may be eligible for California’s elderly parole program.

Experienced Probate Attorneys Serving Clients in LA

Our seasoned legal professionals know firsthand that parole suitability hearings are stressful for both inmates and their families, which is why we are dedicated to using our vast knowledge of the law to represent our clients’ best interests. If you or a loved one are currently serving a long-term prison sentence, then please don’t hesitate to reach out to our firm to learn more about parole suitability hearings.

To set up your free case consultation with a lawyer at our firm, call us today at (800) 462-7160.