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Home detention

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Contact Armstrong Legal:
Sydney: (02) 9261 4555

John Sutton

As a result of amended legislation this penalty was repealed on 24 September 2018 as a standalone order but may be imposed as a condition of an intensive corrections order.

Home detention is an alternative to full-time imprisonment. In effect the gaol sentence is served at your address rather than in a gaol. If you receive a sentence of home detention you will be strictly supervised and subject to electronic monitoring.

Home detention orders are limited to a maximum period of 18 months. This includes any time that the court may order be spent on parole.

Steps involved before ordering

Before an order is made, the court must be satisfied that, having considered all possible alternatives, no penalty other than imprisonment is appropriate

The next stage is that the Court imposes a full time gaol sentence and sets a parole period or gives reasons as to why no parole period is given.

At this stage your lawyer should request that any gaol sentence be served by a home detention order. If your lawyer can satisfy the court that it should do so the court will adjourn the matter so that you can be assessed as to whether you are suitable for a home detention order.

Suitability of offender

Section 78(1) of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act 1999 provides that a home detention order cannot be made unless the court is satisfied that:

  • the offender is a suitable person to serve the sentence by way of home detention;
  • it is appropriate in all of the circumstances that the sentence be served by way of home detention;
  • the persons with whom it is likely the offender would reside, or continue or resume a relationship, during the period of the offender’s home detention have consented in writing, in the form prescribed by the regulations, to the making of the order; and
  • the offender has signed an undertaking, in the form prescribed by the regulations, to comply with the offender’s obligations under the home detention order.

Not available for certain offences

Home detention is not available for the following offences:

  • murder, attempted murder or manslaughter,
  • sexual assault of adults or children or sexual offences involving children,
  • armed robbery,
  • any offence involving the use of a firearm,
  • assault occasioning actual bodily harm (or any more serious assault, such as malicious wounding or assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm),
  • an offence under section 562AB of the Crimes Act 1900 of stalking or intimidating a person with the intention of causing the person to fear personal injury, 
  • a domestic violence offence against any person with whom it is likely the offender would reside, or continue or resume a relationship, if a home detention order were made,
  • an offence under ss 23(2), 24(2), 25(2), 26, 27 or 28 of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 involving a commercial quantity of a prohibited plant or prohibited drug within the meaning of that Act,

Not available for offenders with a certain criminal history

Order may not be made for an offender who has at any time been convicted of any of the following offences:

  • murder, attempted murder or manslaughter,
  • sexual assault of adults or children or sexual offences involving children,
  • who has at any time been convicted of an offence under section 562AB of the Crimes Act 1900 of stalking or intimidating a person with the intention of causing the person to fear personal injury,
  • who has at any time within the last 5 years been convicted of a domestic violence offence against any person with whom it is likely the offender would reside, or continue or resume a relationship, if a home detention order were made,
  • who has at any time been convicted of any offence prescribed by the regulations for the purposes of this paragraph, or
  • who is (or has at any time within the last 5 years been) subject to an apprehended violence order (within the meaning of Part 15A of the Crimes Act 1900) made for the protection of a person with whom it is likely the offender would reside, or continue or resume a relationship, if a home detention order were made

Breaching an order

In a recent study it was reported that 79% (261 of 330) of offenders subject to a home detention order successfully completed the sentence without breach.

If you do breach a home detention order the Parole Board will decide whether to revoke the order. If they do revoke the order it is likely that you will serve any un-served portion of the sentence in full time gaol.


where to next?

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.

Why Choose Armstrong Legal?

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