Unpaid work


Unpaid Work and Other Activity Requirement

An Unpaid Work and Other Activity Requirement can be imposed as part of a Community Payback Order.

Supervision requirement

If you are aged 16 or 17 a Supervision Requirement will be imposed in conjunction with the Unpaid Work and Other Activity Requirement. For individuals aged 18 and over a Supervision Requirement is not always imposed.


Hours imposed can be:

  • from 20 to 100 hours (Level 1) to be completed within three months or
  • 101 to 300 hours (Level 2) to be completed within six months

both are at the discretion of the court and must start within seven days of their order being imposed.

A Level 1 Order is now available to Justice of the Peace Courts for all offences. Community Payback Orders also allow a proportion (30% or a maximum of 30 hours) of the unpaid work hours to be used for therapeutic group work/programme or vocational learning.

Aims and opportunities

Unpaid work allows you the opportunity to:

  • make amends for the impact of your offending and repair the harm caused by your actions
  • ‘make good’ to your victim and/or community

This is done through your engagement in purposeful rehabilitative work that is meaningful to you and the community. Gaining experience of working life will give you the confidence to look for employment.

The Other Activity element involves work to help improve your skills in other areas of your life. This could include skills in literacy, numeracy, problem solving, anger management, addictions support, employability assistance and so on. The overall aims of both Unpaid Work and Other Activity are to:

  • prevent you from further offending
  • build structure to your day
  • support you to move towards a pro-social life

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