This paper presents the results of an experimental and numerical investigation in electric fracture behavior of poled PZT (lead zirconate titanate) specimens. Fracture experiments were conducted on commercial soft type piezoelectric ceramics. Fracture loads under different electric fields were obtained from the experiment. Nonlinear finite element analysis was also employed to calculate the energy release rate for the PZT specimens based on the exact (permeable) and approximate (impermeable) crack models. The effects of applied electric field and polarization switching on the energy release rate are discussed, and the model predictions are compared with the results of the experiments.