Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services :: Adult offenders

Correctional Services

Adult Offenders

Release from Custody

Release from custody can occur at several points in the sentencing process as follows:

  • the parole eligibility date;
  • the discharge possible date; and
  • the final warrant expiry date.

Parole Eligibility

  • Parole is early, conditional release from custody granted by the Ontario Parole Board.
  • It allows only a carefully screened offender to serve the latter portion of his/her sentence under supervision in the community.
  • In Ontario, an offender serving a sentence of up to two years less a day can apply for parole consideration to the Ontario Parole Board. (An offender serving a sentence of more than two years in federal penitentiaries has his/her application for parole considered by the National Parole Board.)

Parole Eligibility Date

  • This is the earliest date an offender may be released from custody by the Ontario Parole Board.
  • An offender becomes eligible for parole after serving one-third of the aggregate or combined sentence and if he/she has met the criteria set by the Board.
  • The release is not a statutory right. If released on parole, a parolee serves the balance of the term of imprisonment in the community, under the terms and conditions set down by the Ontario Parole Board, until the final warrant expiry date (i.e. until the full sentence is completed).
  • Section 41(2) of the Regulation to the Ministry of Correctional Services Act states that parole can be ordered at any time where there are compelling or exceptional circumstances, regardless of whether the offender has reached the one-third mark or not.

Discharge Possible Date

  • This is the earliest possible date an offender may be released from custody taking into account all earned remission.
  • The discharge possible date is equal to approximately two-thirds of the offender's aggregate or combined sentence.

Final Warrant Expiry Date

  • This is the latest date on which all of the sentences expire.

This date may be extended if an offender:

  • has been on bail pending an appeal of his/her sentence; or
  • is unlawfully at large after parole has been suspended or after escaping from custody.