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General FAQ

General FAQ

Offenders under our supervision are prohibited from possessing a firearm, deadly weapon, or any weapon capable of propelling a projectile. You will be given an opportunity to remove all firearms in your home when you are placed on supervision. Your officer will talk to you about suitable arrangements and timeframe to remove them.

Our department operates under a cooperative agreement with all States in the USA and many other countries. Travel outside of PA is not a right when you are under probation or parole supervision. In fact, you must get permission for your own protection. In some states, being there without a travel permit can result in a new felony arrest. There are also states and local municipalities that require you to report to the local police department before staying in their communities. Canada is a frequent tourist or business trip for many, or a stop on the way to Alaska. You are not permitted to enter Canada without prior permission-this includes landing and transferring to another airplane to another country.

If you give your PO a reasonable amount of time, he/she may grant you a temporary/provisional travel permit where possible but travel outside of the Commonwealth of PA must be planned well in advance and coordinated with your PO.

You can contact the Berks County Probation/Parole Department at 610-478-3400. Or you may follow the Contact Us link and connect with us there. 

You can make payments in person at the Clerk of Courts located on the 4th Floor of the Courthouse (633 Court St, Reading Pa 19601), via mail with check or money order to the Central Collections Bureau, c/o Clerk of Courts, 633 Court Street, Berks County Courthouse 4th Floor, Reading Pa 19601, or online at http://ujsportal.pacourts.us click on ePay tab under the eCommerce menu. 
Some of the conditions or rules that individuals will need to abide by are reporting as directed, suitable and valid address, employment, drug screens, payments on fines/cost/restitution, participation in treatment and cog groups, etc... Individuals will be able to discuss what the expectations will be with their supervising officer once they have been place on supervision. 
In Pennsylvania, a sentence of incarceration will normally have a minimum and a maximum length of time.  A County sentence of incarceration is one in which the maximum sentence is 2 years minus one day or less. For State sentences, the Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole assumes responsibility for the case, determines when the inmate is to be paroled, and supervises the parole case through their state agents. In a county sentence, the sentencing judge determines parole and supervises the case through our department's parole officers.

Usually, a state sentence will be served in State Correctional Institution (Graterford, Camp Hill, etc.) and a County sentence will be served at the County Jail. However, the sentencing judge may choose to allow the offender to serve a sentence of up to a maximum of 5 years minus one day in the county jail even though it is a State Sentence.

Probation is a sentencing alternative, it usually does not involve a period of incarceration (there may be some incarceration before bail is set), allowing the offender to remain in the community under supervision. 

Conversely, when an individual is sentenced to Parole, they would have to complete a minimum portion of their sentence incarcerated before being supervised by a Parole Officer.

Whether you are sentenced to either or both, the conditions are the same and there is no difference between the terms Probation Officer or Parole Officer. If you violate the conditions of either sentence, you may be incarcerated and resentenced by the courts. 

It should be noted that the there are two paroling authorities in Pennsylvania: the Common Please Court Judges and the Pa. Board of Probation and Parole. The Pa. Board of Probation and Parole has parole and supervisory authority over those offenders sentenced to 2 years or more in prison.
We are open Monday thru Friday, 8am to 5pm. Our offices are closed on major holidays. Please be sure to contact our office if you do not have an appointment ahead of time to ensure we are able to serve you.