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Home Detention (NSW)

Home detention no longer exists as a standalone sentencing order in New South Wales. However, a home detention condition may be imposed as part of an intensive correction order (ICO). This article outlines how intensive corrections orders and home detention conditions operate in NSW.

What is an intensive correction order?

Under section 7 of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedures) Act 1999, a person who has been sentenced to imprisonment can be ordered to serve that sentence by way of intensive correction in the community.

An intensive correction order can be made in respect of an adult who has been sentenced to up to two years imprisonment for a single offence or up to three years imprisonment for more than one offence.

However, there are some offences for which an intensive correction order cannot be made. These include very serious offences such as murder and manslaughter and prescribed sexual offences.

Conditions of an intensive correction order

An intensive correction order always has the following conditions:

  • Not to commit an offence
  • To submit to supervision by Community Corrections

An ICO may also have one or more of the following conditions:

  • A home detention condition
  • An electronic monitoring condition
  • A curfew condition
  • A community service work condition
  • A rehabilitation or treatment condition
  • A condition not to consume alcohol or drugs
  • A condition not to associate with specified persons
  • A condition not to attend specified places or areas

Home Detention condition

If the court is considering imposing a home detention condition or a community service work condition, it must first have the offender assessed for such a condition and impose the condition only if they are found to be suitable for it.

A person who is sentenced to an ICO with a home detention condition will be confined to their home and allowed to go out only with permission from Corrections for approved purposes such as attending work, study or medical appointments.

Why were home detention orders abolished?

Home detention orders were abolished when the New South Wales government overhauled the state’s community-based sentencing options in 2017. Suspended sentences, good behaviour bonds and home detention orders were abolished and other community-based sentencing orders were introduced.

The government stated that the changes were needed because of the large number of offenders being placed on community-based orders without supervision. This was felt to be an inadequate way of addressing offending behaviour.

The new community-based sentencing orders were designed to allow for orders to be tailored to an individual situation and to address the specific causes of a person’s offending.

If you require legal advice or representation in any legal matter, please contact Armstrong Legal.

Fernanda Dahlstrom

This article was written by Fernanda Dahlstrom

Fernanda Dahlstrom has a Bachelor of Laws, a Bachelor of Arts and a Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice. She has also completed a Master’s in Writing and Literature. Fernanda practised law for eight years, working in criminal defence, child protection and domestic violence law in the Northern Territory and in family law in Queensland.

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