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Youth court orders

When a young person pleads or is found guilty of an offence, the youth court may impose an order on them or their parents which we are responsible for supervising.

Detention and training order

A detention and training order is given when the offence committed is serious enough for a custodial sentence to be considered. For example, where an adult committing the same offence would be sent to prison. Half of the sentence will be spent in custody and the other half in the community. On release, the young person should see their supervising officer twice a week.

Parenting order

A parenting order may be given if your child has committed an offence or has not been going to school. The order will give you support and training for up to 12 months to help you stop your child from re-offending, or help you get them to go to school everyday.

Referral order

A referral order means the court is referring the person to a youth offending panel to discuss the offence and look at ways to help the offender to put things right. The panel is usually someone from our youth offending team, members of the community and if they choose, the victim of the offence. The offender’s parents or guardians must also attend.

Reparation order

A reparation order is given to prevent someone offending again. It helps the offender understand the impact that crime has on the victim, and what can be done to make amends. The offender may be asked to think about how their crime has affected the community, write a letter or meet the victim to apologise, or carry out some practical work for the victim or the community.


When a young person commits an offence, they may not have to go to court. The young person can be referred to the out of court panel which can decide on various options, for example, the youth offending service may make a written assessment and the panel may then issue a caution with conditions. This could include looking at attitude to the victim(s), ways of making reparation, education difficulties, involvement with the misuse of alcohol and drugs, and identifying ways of becoming involved in positive activities.

Final warning

When young people first get into trouble or commit minor offences, they won’t necessarily have to go to court. If the young person breaks the law a second time they are given a final warning by the police in the presence of a parent or other appropriate adult which is kept on record for up to seven years. However, the police can decide that a first offence is serious enough for a final warning, or prosecute the first or second offence.