top of page

PC 4019 “Custody Credits” for California Misdemeanor & Felony Crimes

What are “PC 4019 Credits”?

PC 4019 is a reference to the California penal code at section 4019, which deals with prisoner “custody credits,” or the amount of credit that an inmate is given towards reducing his or her jail or prison sentence.

Example: In a second offense misdemeanor DUI case, if the defendant is convicted and sentenced to 90 days in jail, then the defendant may earn up to fifty percent (50%) off his jail sentence is he serves his time in jail with good behavior. In other words, the 90 days is reduced to 45 days if the defendant serves those first 45 days in jail with “good behavior.”

Fifty Percent Credit: In general, “PC 4019 Credits” can reduce a jail or prison sentence by up to fifty percent (50%) in most circumstances. However, 4019 credits do not apply to all crimes, and even when PC 4019 credits apply to a certain criminal offense, other conditions may apply before those custody credits may be earned.

PC 4019 Law

PC 4019 applies when the defendant is confined or committed to a county jail, industrial farm, city jail, work release program, or road camp (PC 4019(a) Abbrev.).

4019 credits, or fifty percent off a defendant’s jail sentence, is calculated from the date of arrest to the date of sentencing. In other words, all time spent in county jail is used to calculate 4019 credits.

Example: David is arrested for a violation or criminal trespass (PC 602). David spends 1 day in jail before he bails out of jail. Later, at a pretrial hearing, David pleads guilty to criminal trespass, and he is placed on misdemeanor probation. As a term probation, David is ordered to serve 10 days on work release “with PC 4019 credits” for the 2 days (1 day actual and 1 day 4019 credits). In other words, David still owes 8 days of work release, which will also be cut in half if David serves his work release sentence with good behavior.

PC 4019 credits apply to all misdemeanor crimes and some felony crimes. Also, PC 4019 credits apply to all jail and work release sentences related to a violation of probation or parole (not including “flash incarceration [see below]), and to all sentences related to a commitment to a mental health facility (PC 4019(a) 6 - 8)).

Example: John is found to be in violation of probation. He is sentenced to 10 days in a local county jail. If John serves the first 5 days of his sentence with good behavior, then the balance of his 10-day sentence will be deemed served.

Four Day Minimum: PC 4019 credits do not apply to a jail or work release sentence unless the defendant is sentence is at least 4 days (4019(e)).

Example: Maria is convicted of misdemeanor welfare fraud. She is placed on probation and ordered to serve 3 days in the county jail as part of her probation sentence.

Result: Maria must serve all 3 days in the county jail without a fifty percent (50%) reduction of that jail sentence, even if Maria serves that jail sentence with good behavior.

Loss of Credit: If the defendant is disciplined in jail or while on work release, he or she does not automatically lose PC 4019 custody credits. Other discipline options may be available.

Example: Stacy is serving 200 days in jail after a conviction for felony evading police. The crime of evading police is eligible for 4019 custody credits, which means that Stacy will only serve half her sentence (50%) if she serves her jail sentence with good behavior. Unfortunately, Stacy got into a fight in jail (not good behavior).

Result: Jail officials may choose to discipline Stacy for her bad behavior in ways that do not disrupt her PC 4019 credits, such as by isolating Stacy in solitary confinement for 10 days while PC 4019 credits continue to accrue.

Felony Crimes & PC 4019

As stated, all misdemeanor crimes are eligible for PC 4019 custody credits. Common felony crimes eligible for PC 4019 credits include inflict corporal injury to spouse (PC 273.5(a)), joyriding (VC 10851(a)), criminal threats (PC 422(a)), grand theft (PC 487), assault with a deadly weapon (PC 245), perjury (PC 118), welfare fraud (WI 10980), felony DUI (VC 23152), vandalism (PC 594), willful child endangerment (PC 273a), felony statutory rape (PC 261.5), and more.

Flash Incarceration Issues: PC 4019 credits do not apply to “flash incarceration” for parole violations where the incarceration is imposed pursuant to PC 3000.08 or 3454.

For more information on California penal code 4019 custody credits, more commonly referred to as ‘day for day’ credits, or ’50 percent’ credits, contact our criminal defense attorneys for a free consultation.

Our successful and award-winning criminal defense attorneys have successfully handled hundreds of misdemeanor and felony criminal cases in the Inland Empire, including the cities and courts of San Bernardino, Riverside, Fontana, Rancho Cucamonga, Victorville, Redlands, Ontario, Rialto, Yucaipa, and more. Call today!


Recent Blogs

pc 4019, custody, credits, good conduct credits, penal code 4019, ca, california, san bernardino, rancho cucamonga, fontana, rialto, ontario, chino, victorville, yucaipa, redlands, riverside, highland, apple valley, hesperia, banning, beaumont, se habla espanol, felony, jail, misdemeanor, prison, work release, house arrest, upland
PC 4019 Custody Credit


bottom of page