Youth justice – community orders and sentences

Referral order

A referral order (RO) is an order made by the court, to help you to take responsibility for your behaviour and stop offending.

It’s a community-based order most often used by the courts when dealing with 10 to 17-year-olds, particularly for first-time offenders who plead guilty.

A court will decide how long a referral order will last, but it will be between 3-12 months.

The court will tell you to attend a meeting called the youth offending panel.

Referral order post court flowchart.

Youth rehabilitation order

The youth rehabilitation order (YRO) is a community sentence with 18 requirements.

Judges and magistrates may choose a single requirement or combination of requirements depending on the seriousness of the offence and the potential risk of harm posed.

The requirements enable you to engage with interventions most likely to address your offending behaviour.

The 18 requirements are:

Youth justice dictionary

Youth justice dictionary.

Compliments or complaints

If you would like to make a compliment, complaint or comment about the youth offending team please get in touch with the service manager. Email your full name and contact details to: marking it for the attention of the service manager.

If you are not satisfied, you can also make a formal children’s social care complaint.

Page updated on: 28 April 2021

Hackney Youth Offending Team


275 Mare Street
E8 1GR


Opening times

  • Mon to Fri: 9am-5pm (except bank holidays)