Difference Between Jail and Prison and How to Stay Out of Both

Door of jail or prison cell

If you or a loved one is facing criminal charges, it’s important to understand the difference between jail and prison.

Jail is usually for people who are awaiting trial, while prison is for those who have been convicted of a crime.

In addition, there are differences in the way inmates are treated in jail and prison. In this blog post, we will discuss the differences between jail and prison, as well as how to stay out of either one!

What Is Jail?

Jail is a short-term holding facility for the newly arrested and those awaiting trial or sentencing. Jails are usually local facilities under the jurisdiction of a city, local district, or county.

Inmates sentenced to serve under a year in jail may be kept in the local jail for the rest of their sentence.

Most jails are run by the local sheriff’s office and house fewer inmates than prisons. They are also often less secure than prisons, with fewer guards and less stringent rules.

What Is Prison?

On the other hand, prisons are long-term facilities run by the state or federal government.

Those who have been convicted of a state offense are generally incarcerated in a state facility, while those who have committed federal crimes are usually imprisoned in a federal institution somewhere in the United States.

Inmates in prison are typically serving sentences of more than one year.

Prisons are generally more strict than jails, with more rules and regulations that inmates must follow.

In some states, there are privately operated jails and prisons. The state contracts with these private facilities to house prisoners. This means that the state does not have as much control over running the facility.

There is also typically a more significant divide between the guards and inmates in prisons than in jails. Inmates in prison also have less freedom than those incarcerated in jail.

They are usually assigned specific jobs or tasks to complete during their time in prison and are only allowed to leave their cells for specific reasons and at specific times.

What is the Difference Between Jail and Prison?

There are a few key differences between jail and prison:

  • Jails are usually local facilities while prisons are typically operated by the state.
  • Jails are typically used to hold people who have been charged with a crime but have not yet been convicted, while prisons are for people who have already been convicted of a crime.
  • Prisons usually offer more services and programs than jails, such as educational opportunities and job training.
  • Prisons are more secure than jails, with more guards and security features.
  • Jails are typically smaller than prisons.

How to Stay Out of Both

The best way to stay out of jail or prison is to avoid being charged with a crime in the first place. If you are charged with a crime, try to get it reduced to a lesser charge. If you are convicted of a crime, try to get a sentence that does not involve jail or prison time.

If you are being charged with a crime, contact Bail Hotline Bail Bonds today to learn about your options.

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