If you are sentenced by a court to a Community Order or
Suspended Sentence Order, you will be seen in court by an officer
from the National Probation Service (NPS) who will explain the
terms of your sentence and if you are to report to the NPS or South
Yorkshire Community Rehabilitation Company (SYCRC.)
Do not leave court without contacting the Court
The Court Probation Officer will tell you which probation office
to report to and on what day to be signed up to your order.
You must keep this appointment or you risk being
re-arrested and returned to court.
At your first appointment you will meet your offender manager
who will explain the details of your sentence and give you a list
of appointments. The conditions of your supervision will be
explained to you and you will sign up to the following
- Keep all appointments on time
- Follow the instructions you are given, including attending
group programmes and keeping appointments with other agencies as
- Tell us beforehand if you need to re-arrange an appointment,
explain why and provide proof within 5 days.
- If you miss an appointment, you must tell us why and provide
proof within 5 days.
- Co-operate with your supervisor in addressing your offending
You must not:
- Change your address without the prior consent
of your offender manager
- Come in for supervision under the influence of alcohol or
- Talk or act in any way that offends other people or is
aggressive on SYCRC premises
- Behave in a way which makes your supervisor think the public is
- Commit any further offences
If you miss an appointment or break the rules for a
second time you will be taken back to court and could be sent to
If you are sentenced to carry out Community Payback, you must
wear suitable clothing. South Yorkshire CRC will provide
high-visibility jackets and any other specialist protective
clothing you may need such as wellington boots or a hard hat.
You are expected to report to the Community
Payback office yourself but we will provide transport to the
work site if this is in a different location.
The introduction of the Offender Rehabilitation Act
(ORA) means that all offenders sentenced to a custodial (prison)
sentence will receive a minimum of 12 months Supervision within the
community by a Probation Officer following their release from
prison. The length of your custodial sentence will determine how
long you spend in prison and how long you are supervised in the
Community. An example of a sentence can be seen below:
Offenders aged 21 years or over are sent to adult prisons, but
custodial sentences for those aged 18 to 21 are served in a Young
Offender Institution (YOI). Young offenders under 18 years old are
sent to secure units or youth treatment centres.
When offenders aged over 18 are sentenced to custody, their case
will be allocated to a probation officer who works in their home
area. This officer is responsible for planning for their release,
writing reports, visiting the prisoner and, where appropriate,
keeping in contact with the prisoner's family and initiating
contact with victims.
Release from Prison
Offenders released under the supervision of the probation
services must report to a nominated officer on the day of their
release. The officer will give them a set of appointments to keep
and draw up a supervision plan to prevent re-offending and address
any housing, employment or resettlement issues.
A licence may include conditions including:
- Be well behaved, not commit offences
- Keep in touch with supervisor
- Receive visits from supervisor
- Reside at approved address and seek permission to move
- Undertake only approved work and seek permission to change
- Not to travel outside UK without permission
Additional conditions (only to be used when appropriate
to manage the risk of serious harm the offender poses)
- Contact requirement
- Prohibited - activity, residency and/or contact
- Programme requirement
- Drug testing
Home Detention Curfews (HDC)
Popularly known as 'tagging', the Crime and
Disorder Act 1998 extended existing schemes so that prisoners
can apply for release under electronic surveillance. This is
subject to satisfactory assessment of risk to the public. A
monitoring device is fitted to the offender's ankle, linked to
sensors at the offender's home address. During the day, the
offender is free to leave the house, but they are subject to strict
overnight curfews (usually between 7pm-7am).
Tags are fitted and monitored by private security companies
under contract to the Home Office but offenders are also required
to attend supervision appointments with their probation officer.
HDCs are intended to allow offenders to attend work or training
courses during their day, but prevent them from associating with
former criminal accomplices at night.
Disclosing your conviction
The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 outlaws discrimination
against ex-offenders. It is intended to help people with few and/or
minor convictions. People with many or serious convictions will
probably not benefit from the Act because their rehabilitation
period will usually be longer.
Certain criminal convictions are 'spent' (forgotten) after a
rehabilitation period. This period varies according to the offence.
For people aged 18 or over when convicted:
Most convictions become spent after five years
- Prison sentences up to six months become spent after seven
- Prison sentences up to two and a half years become spent after
- Sentences over two and a half years are never spent.
You don't need to disclose spent convictions when applying for
most jobs. Under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 it's
unlawful for an employer to discriminate on the grounds of a spent
conviction. However, some types of jobs are exempt from this
Act - this means you have to disclose spent convictions as well as
unspent ones. These jobs include:
- working with children and vulnerable adults, such as elderly
and disabled people
- senior roles in banking and the financial services
- certain posts connected to law enforcement, including the
judiciary and the police
- work involving national security
- certain posts in the prison service
- certain professions in areas such as health, pharmacy and the
- private security work.
For more information about disclosing your conviction to
employers, please speak to your offender manager.