§ 6139.  Parole procedure.

(a)  Specific requirements.--

(1)  The board may, subject to the provisions and limitations set forth in section 6138 (relating to violation of terms of parole), grant paroles of its own motion whenever in its judgment the interests of justice require the granting of these paroles.

(2)  The board shall consider applications for parole by an inmate or the inmate's attorney.

(3)  Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (2), the board shall not be required to consider nor dispose of an application by an inmate or an inmate's attorney where a parole decision has been issued by the board on that case within one year of the date of the current application for parole.

(3.1)  Notwithstanding paragraphs (2) and (3), the board shall not be required to consider nor to dispose of an application by an inmate or an inmate's attorney in the case of an inmate sentenced under 18 Pa.C.S. § 1102.1 (relating to sentence of persons under the age of 18 for murder, murder of an unborn child and murder of a law enforcement officer) if a parole decision has been issued by the board within five years of the date of the current application.

(3.2)  Nothing under this section shall be interpreted as granting a right to be paroled to any person, and a decision by the board and its designees relating to a person sentenced under 18 Pa.C.S. § 1102.1 may not be considered an adjudication under 2 Pa.C.S. Chs. 5 Subch. A (relating to practice and procedure of Commonwealth agencies) and 7 Subch. A (relating to judicial review of Commonwealth agency action).

(4)  Hearings of applications shall be held by the board whenever in its judgment hearings are necessary. Reasonable rules and regulations shall be adopted by the board for the presentation and hearing of applications for parole.

(5)  Whenever an inmate is paroled by the board, whether of its own motion or after hearing of an application for parole, or whenever an application for parole is refused by the board, a brief statement of the reasons for the board's action shall be filed of record in the offices of the board and shall be at all reasonable times open to public inspection.

(6)  In no case shall a parole be granted, or an application for parole be dismissed, unless a board member, hearing examiner or other person so designated by the board shall have seen and heard the parolee in person in regard thereto within six months prior to the granting or dismissal thereof. This requirement does not apply to paroles under section 6137.1 (relating to short sentence parole).

(7)  The board shall dispose of the application within six months of its filing.

(b)  Reliance on reports.--In granting and revoking paroles and in discharging from parole, the members of the board acting thereon shall not be required to personally hear or see all the witnesses and evidence submitted to them for their action, but they may act on the report submitted to them by their agents and employees, together with any pertinent and adequate information furnished to them by fellow members of the board or by others. In granting or revoking parole or bringing an alleged parole violator before a hearing examiner, the appearance may be conducted via videoconferencing or similar virtual presence technology. This subsection shall not apply to victim input under section 6140 (relating to victim statements, testimony and participation in hearing).

(c)  Notice to district attorney.--At least ten days before paroling an inmate on its own motion, the board shall give written notice of the contemplated parole to the district attorney of the county in which the inmate was sentenced, and, in cases of hearings on applications for parole as provided for in this section, at least ten days' written notice of the time and place fixed for such hearing shall be given either by the board or by the applicant, as the board shall direct, to the court and district attorney of the county in which the applicant was sentenced.


(Oct. 25, 2012, P.L.1655, No.204; Dec. 18, 2019, P.L.776, No.115, eff. 120 days)


2019 Amendment.  Act 115 amended subsecs. (a)(6) and (b).

2012 Amendment.  Act 204 added subsec. (a)(3.1) and (3.2), effective immediately as to subsec. (a)(3.1) and 60 days as to the remainder of the section.

Cross References.  Section 6139 is referred to in sections 6137.1, 6140 of this title.