1. Table of contents

Community payback order

The community payback order was introduced in 2011 as a direct alternative to custody. It can be imposed for offences committed after 1st February 2011 and from that date, replaces separate probation, community service and supervised attendance orders.

One or more of the following requirements can be imposed as part of the community payback order :

  • unpaid work or other activity
  • offender supervision
  • compensation
  • residence
  • conduct
  • programme
  • drug treatment
  • alcohol treatment
  • mental health treatment
  • restricted movement (electronic tag)

The court and the social worker can also ask for the CPO to be reviewed at any time if the individual’s compliance, risk or needs have changed.

If someone is sentenced to between 20 and 100 hours it is classified as a level 1 requirement and must be completed within 3 months. Unpaid work for a period of between 101 and 300 hours is classified as a level 2 requirement and must be completed within 6 months.

Some examples of unpaid work carried out as part of a community payback order are :

  • environmental improvements
  • graffiti removal
  • gardening
  • painting
  • decorating
  • refurbishing buildings
  • assistance and support for the elderly or disabled.

Restriction of liberty order

The court can use a curfew system (known as a restriction of liberty order or tag) to reduce a person’s opportunities for criminal activity by restricting their movements within the community. This can also protect the community from anti-social behaviour.

The tag is placed around the person’s ankle and a monitor is placed in their house. For a set period each day, normally between the hours when offending has previously taken place, the person is confined to their house. Alternatively, the monitor can be placed at an address which the person is forbidden from approaching or entering.