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A non-parole period is the minimum amount of time that an offender will be kept imprisoned before being eligible to be released on parole.

The balance of the term of the sentence must not exceed one-third of the non-parole period for the sentence. This rule applies unless there are “special circumstances” for settling the balance of the term at more or less than one-thrid of the parole period.

Factors such as the age, state of health, prospects of rehabilitation or the personal circumstances of the offender may constitute a finding of “special circumstances” so as to allow for a longer period of time on parole.

  • The earliest release date is the end of the non-parole period.
  • Where the total sentence is of three years or less, the judicial officer must make an order directing the offender’s
  • release at the end of the non-parole period.

Where the sentence imposed is more than three years, the offender becomes eligible to apply for parole at the end of the non-parole period. In this situation, parole is not an automatic right and the NSW Parole Authority will determine whether the offender will be released from custody or remain there until the end of the parole period.

A judicial officer may decline to set a non-parole period for a sentence in particular circumstances, (such as the nature of the offence, or the criminal history of the offender) and must give reasons for any such decision.

Where the judicial officer is sentencing the offender for two or more offences, an aggregate sentence may be imposed. This means that one non-parole period is set instead of one for each offence.

Where an offender fails to comply with his or her conditions of parole the NSW Parole Authority may revoke

  • the parole. 

Disclaimer : This article is just a summary of the subject matter being discussed and should not be regarded as a comprehensive legal advice for you to defend yourself alone. If you are charged with criminal offences, it is recommended that you seek legal assistance from criminal lawyers.

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