Community custody order
A community custody order is considered to be a sentence of imprisonment, but allows the offender to serve their time in the community.
The community custody order requires intensive supervision by a probation and parole officer and participation in community work and programs, treatment or training.
These orders can be in place for up to 12 months. Someone on a community custody order will be required to:
- follow all reasonable directions of the probation and parole officer
- report to and receive visits from their officer at least twice a week
- attend programs or counselling as directed by the probation and parole officer
- complete 12 hours of community work each week
- follow all other conditions set by the court.
Someone on a community custody order must not:
- break the law while on the order
- leave the Northern Territory (NT) without permission from the probation and parole officer
- breach the conditions of the order.
After the court places someone on a community custody order
After sentencing the court will give the offender a copy of their court order which will outline the conditions the offender must comply with.
The person must report to the Community Corrections Office named on the order within two working days.
When the offender reports to the Community Corrections Office they will be assigned a probation and parole officer.
When you meet with the officer they will:
- go through the order with the offender to make sure they understand it
- explain the conditions the offender must comply with
- provide the details of when and where they will attend community work
- if the offender has a condition to attend programs or counselling the probation and parole officer will provide the details of when and where they will attend
- help the offender develop a plan to follow the conditions of their order.
If the offender can’t attend the meeting
If an offender can’t attend a community work session, a program or an appointment it is their responsibility to notify the probation and parole officer immediately.
The offender will be required to provide evidence such as a doctor’s certificate or letter from their employer.
If the offender doesn't follow the order
If an offender doesn’t follow the conditions of the order, the probation and parole officer will investigate what has happened and the offender may have to return to court to explain their actions.
If the officer tells you that you have to go back to court you could be sent to prison so you should contact your lawyer, they will explain your options and what the court might decide.
Programs can help offenders make changes in their life and reduce the risk of re-offending.
Programs have been developed to provide help with gambling, drugs, alcohol, money problems or mental illness.
Community work is an important part of the community custody order. It is an opportunity for the person to make amends to the community.
This is done by completing work that is of benefit to the community.
If someone can't meet conditions of the order
An offender can apply to the court at any time during the order period for the order to be revoked and another penalty substituted.
Contact your lawyer to discuss your options and make an application to the court.
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Last updated: 17 June 2022
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