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Services for offenders and their families

Community Payback Order

CPOs are orders that are managed by social work, which take place within the community and have a focus on rehabilitation and paying back to communities. 

There are nine requirements that can be included in a CPO, including supervision, unpaid work, compensation and attendance at drug or alcohol treatment. 

Individuals must agree to the imposition of a CPO as a sentence, otherwise an alternative sentence will be imposed.

When imposing a CPO, sentencers choose the selection of requirements that best fit with the person's needs and ability to carry out any unpaid work requirement. 

The most frequently used CPO requirements are supervision and unpaid work.  

A CPO will normally be made for between six months and three years. There is no minimum age requirement for a person to receive a CPO, except where an unpaid work or other activity requirement is imposed, in which case the individual must be aged 16 or above.

Supervision involves regular contact with a social worker, with the purpose of addressing offending behaviour and making constructive life changes. Persons made subject to a supervision requirement will be seen in a locality justice team.

Unpaid work involves carrying out work to the benefit of the local community and/or learning new skills. CPOs that solely consist of unpaid work should usually be completed within three months. Individuals subject to unpaid work or other activity requirements will carry out activities managed centrally by North Lanarkshire Justice Services.   

For more information

Please contact your local social work office.

Page last updated:
14 Feb 2024

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