Imprisonment is a penalty of last resort. A court may not sentence a person to imprisonment unless it is satisfied, having considered all possible alternatives, that no penalty other than imprisonment is appropriate.

In New South Wales, a court that sentences a person to imprisonment for six months or less must indicate to the person, and make a record of, its reasons for doing so, including:

  • Its reasons for deciding that no penalty other than imprisonment is appropriate, and
  • Its reasons for deciding not to make an order allowing the person to participate in an intervention program or other program for treatment or rehabilitation (if you have not previously participated in such a program in respect of the offence for which the court is sentencing you).

If someone close to you has been sentenced to imprisonment or refused bail, you may benefit from reading the below articles.


If you suspect that you may be under investigation, or if you have been charged with an offence, it is vital to get competent legal advice as early as possible. Our lawyers are highly specialised in criminal law and will be able to guide you through the process while dealing with the various authorities related to your matter.


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