Home Detention (SA)

In South Australia, a person who is sentenced to imprisonment can be ordered to serve the time as home detention. Home detention allows an offender to live in the community under supervision at a specified address and on strict conditions, including the condition that they do not leave home without permission. This page deals with home detention for adults and for young people in South Australia.


An adult can be sentenced to home detention in South Australia under the Sentencing Act 2017.

A young person can be sentenced to this penalty under the Young Offenders Act 1993.

Home detention orders for adults

Under section 71 of the Sentencing Act 2017, when a court imposes a sentence of imprisonment, it may order that the sentence be served on home detention if:

  • The court considers that the sentence should not be suspended; and
  • The court considers that the person is suitable.

However, there are a number of situations where this cannot occur. These include:

  • Where the court considers that the order would affect public confidence in the administration of justice;
  • Where the defendant is being sentenced to imprisonment with a non-parole period of more than two years for manslaughter or causing serious harm, for certain other classes of offending.  

A home detention order will not be made unless the proposed residence is suitable and there are adequate resources for monitoring the defendant.

In deciding whether to make an order, the court will take into account the impact the order would have on:

  • Any victims of the offence
  • The defendant’s partner or spouse
  • Any other person who lives at the proposed residence.


Under section 72 of the Sentencing Act 2017, a home detention order is subject to the following conditions:

  • The person must not leave home except for specified purposes, such as to attend work, education or training, to receive urgent medical or dental treatment, or to attend an intervention program
  • The person must be of good behaviour
  • The person must be supervised and obey lawful directions
  • The person must not possess a firearm
  • The person must not use illicit drugs and must submit to testing
  • The person must be monitored by an electronic device
  • Any other conditions the court thinks appropriate.

Release-ordered home detention

When a South Australian court sentences a person to imprisonment and does not place them on a home detention order, the prisoner may be considered by Community Corrections for release-ordered home detention under the Correctional Services Act 1982 if they are eligible.

A prisoner’s suitability will be considered with reference to the conditions and the suitability of the address they propose to live at.

A person may not be released on home detention if:

  • They are serving an indefinite sentence without a non-parole period;
  • They have been excluded from release on home detention by the Minister.

Young people and home detention

A young person who is sentenced to detention under the Young Offenders Act 1993 may be ordered to serve the term as home detention. Under section 37A of the Young Offenders Act 1993, that sentence is subject to these conditions:

  • That the young person remain at a specified address and not leave home except for work, study, instruction or training, urgent medical or dental treatment, or any other purpose specified by their home detention officer (HDO);
  • That the young person be of good behaviour;
  • That the young person obey the lawful directions of their HDO;
  • The person must be monitored by an electronic device;
  • Other any condition that the court specifies.

A young person who is serving a sentence of home detention will be assigned a HDO who may direct them to undertake education, training, employment or counselling. The officer is responsible for supervising their compliance and may contact them or any person at a place they are permitted to attend.  

It is an offence to hinder a HDO or to fail to answer their question truthfully.

Any absence from home must be approved by the HDO When seeking permission to leave home for any purpose, the young person will have to provide the following information:

  • Departure times
  • Transport methods
  • Details of any person accompanying them
  • The purpose of the absence
  • Their contact details while out of the house  

If you require legal advice or representation in any legal matter, please contact Go To Court Lawyers.


Fernanda Dahlstrom

Fernanda Dahlstrom has a Bachelor of Laws from Latrobe University, a Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice from the College of Law, a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Melbourne and a Master of Arts (Writing and Literature) from Deakin University. Fernanda practised law for eight years, working in criminal defence, child protection and domestic violence law in the Northern Territory. She also practised in family law after moving to Brisbane in 2016.
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