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Information for families

My child is on bail


What is bail?

Bail is an agreement to appear in court on a set day. It is your child's right to apply for bail when charged with an offence. Bail applies only if your child has been charged and does not apply to your child if they have been issued with a court attendance notice (CAN).


There are two types of bail...

  1. Unconditional
    Your child must appear at court on a set day.

  2. Conditional
    Your child is released with conditions which might include:

    • reporting to police

    • times when your child must be at home

    • an acceptable person vouching for the child

    • requiring a surety or an amount of cash be lodged, which may be forfeited if they do not appear at court on the set day.

If your child does not abide by the conditions of bail the police can place them in custody.
On occasions the court may direct your child to accept supervision of Juvenile Justice while on bail.

If this occurs it is important that you and your child make prompt contact with your juvenile justice officer.


Police Bail...

When your child is charged the senior police officer on duty will decide whether or not bail will be granted. A number of issues are considered including the seriousness of the offence, community ties and likelihood of attendance at court.


Court Bail...

If your child has been refused bail by the police, the court may grant bail, allowing them back into the community.


If bail is granted...

  • Your child will be released on the condition that they attend court on a set day.

If your child is not able to return home when bail is granted a juvenile justice officer will help find a suitable place to stay.


If bail is refused...

  • Your child will be kept in custody until their court appearance. Juveniles who are refused bail can only reapply for bail if they were not legally represented when the previous application was dealt with or if new facts or circumstances have arisen since the previous application. Juvenile Justice may assist with the presentation to the court of these new facts or circumstances should they arise.

Children under 18 are not usually kept in police cells - they are generally placed in a juvenile justice centre to await the sitting of the court.


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