How long does it take to transfer probation to another state?

When the state accepts a probation transfer, the receiving state advises the sending and includes reporting instructions to the offender.

Then, the sending state issues a travel permit to the offender who makes his way to the probation officer in the receiving form. The offender has five business days to travel to another state and report to an officer appointed in the receiving jurisdiction.

There are practice points here. The sending status can submit a complete request for transfer no later than 120 calendar days before the corrective facility’s planned release.

In my experience, even if the offender is not in custody, it may be possible to request that a pre-transfer application be collected and remitted after the offender is given probation.

However, it is like moving a mountain because officers can usually refuse to do anything unless placed on probation and not within their jurisdiction. It is a function of a person in need of a Tennessee Department of Corrections (TDOC) identifying number.

The process involved in transferring probation


The sending state may request that the receiving state agrees to an expedited reporting directive if the sending state believes that an emergency exists and the receiving state consents to that determination.

In my experience, the fastest way to approve a transfer is to prepare all documents on the front end. The transfer request requires essential information so that the receiving state can make an informed decision.

The offender who wants to transfer cannot do so unless the reporting instructions have been given by the state he has received. It is a violation of the Interstate Compact for the sending state to allow eligible offenders to share before completing their investigation and accept the transfer request.

There are exceptions for moving to another state during the day to work and return, and there is an exception to the seven-day permit, but the more paperwork it takes to obtain, the easier it is to wait for final approval.

The receiving state rarely waits for 45 days but is take-away here. But it can take two months or more to start from the day you request a transfer from your current supervising agent.

If the offender goes to the state before the recipient approves the form, the receiving state may deny the offender’s approval and keep him or her out of that jurisdiction forever.

In short, the process you need to follow to transfer your probation is:

Talk to your probation officer

Clear your reason to the officer and see if it is possible. Each jurisdiction has its own rules, but generally, you need to show a compelling reason to submit a transfer request, such as moving closer to your job or school.

If you usually live in the receiving county, probation almost always is transferred. It can happen, for example, if you were convicted of a crime that was on leave elsewhere and you want to return to your home county.

➡LEARN MORE: What to do when you have an arrest warrant?

Request transfer

If the probation officer feels you have a good reason for transferring, they will complete the paperwork and request a transfer on your behalf. While each county has different rules, judges or supervising officers will consider at least the following factors:

  • The reason for the transfer
  • Your probation terms and have you followed them
  • Victim issues, such as whether the move will potentially keep you in close contact with the victim or make it harder for law enforcement to enforce protective orders
  • Balance of any penalty, fee, or reinstatement you have been given. If you pay the money, the judge may order you to pay it before your probation is transferred.

Wait for county approval.

It is up to the probation office in the receiving county to obtain or decline the transfer. The one in the new county will examine your proposed residence and determine if it is suitable.

The office will also verify that you can complete any program you were ordered to do as a condition of your probation. If the request is approved, you will receive instructions to report to your new probation officer. After you get it, you can move.

Mail-in changed to probation.

Some counties did not supervise rape investigations. If your belief is one that the receiving county does not run, you can convert your probation to “mail-in probation.” which allows you to report to your current probation officer by mail instead of in-person, enabling you to move out of the county.