If I am sentenced to one year in county jail how much of the one year will I actually serve in custody?

By: Wallin & Klarich

This is a question we are often asked. The answer to the question depends upon several factors.

Under California law for most crimes, if you are sentenced to one year in county jail you will actually serve 50% of that sentence or six months.


However, there are certain more serious crimes, where you could serve as much as 80% or 85% of the one year sentence. These crimes are normally serious felony matters where you were fortunate enough to receive probation or cases where you have received probation but you have a prior “strike offense”.

Of course prior to entering into any plea bargain it is critical you meet with a private experienced criminal defense lawyer to help you better understand the defenses to your case and how much time you would actually serve based upon the crime for which you are to plead guilty to.

In some counties in California the overcrowding in the local county jails can impact the actual time you do in custody on your case. For example, currently in Los Angeles County some defendants can end up doing as little as 10% of their actual sentence if the county jail population is at a high level when they begin their sentence. This could mean that on a one year sentence you could do less than 30 days in jail. However, this is something you should discuss with your Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer before you plead guilty to any crime.

At our law firm we realize that protecting your criminal record and freedom is your first priority. This is why you can always rely on the criminal defense lawyers of Wallin and Klarich to be there for you when you have a question about your criminal case. Call us toll free at 888-280-6839. We will be there when you call.

Posted In: Jail and Misdemeanors