Out of court Disposals

Out of court Disposals are for low-level offending which does not need prosecution at court and can be dealt with quickly and easily. Our service aims to reduce the number of children and young people who enter the criminal justice system if they admit their offence and it is low-risk enough to be suitable for an out of court disposal (eg Possession of Cannabis).


Triage means the child/young person is placed in positive activities and mainstream services to move them away from offending behaviour without criminalising them.

The child or young person is assessed by someone from our team. An intervention plan is drawn up which they, and their parent or carer must sign. They must attend appointments we have arranged for them. If they do not complete the plan, it could impact them in future cases. A triage will not show on a child or young person’s criminal record.

Youth Caution/Youth Conditional Caution

Cautions are a part of a person’s criminal record and may show on an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS – formerly CRB) check.

Children and young people can be issued with a caution, with or without conditions.

Caution with conditions

If a caution with conditions is issued (‘youth conditional caution’), the child or young person must abide by these conditions within 3 months or possibly be prosecuted in the courts.

They will have to attend the Youth Justice Service for appointments with their worker.

Caution without conditions

If a caution is given without conditions, there is no penalty for not abiding by it. However, the caution may be mentioned in any future involvement that child or young person has with the police or criminal justice agencies. Voluntary interventions can be added to a caution.


Download the Out of court Disposals leaflet