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3 Levels of Home Confinement Rules
(Electronic Monitoring & More)

When a person is sentenced to home confinement, all of their movements in and out of the house are strictly limited and closely monitored. They must follow a predetermined daily schedule and can only leave home for approved reasons.
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C.L. Mike Schmidt Published by C.L. Mike Schmidt

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What is Home Confinement?

Also known as house arrest, home confinement is an intermediate community corrections program designed to restrict the activities of offenders in the community. Home confinement restricts the freedom of offenders by requiring them to remain at home during specified timeframes, such as at all times, all times except when in
school or working, or at night—that is curfews.

The offender's activities are closely monitored to ensure that they are complying with the conditions set by the court. The level of monitoring by supervisors varies from case to case, but contacts are typically more frequent than traditional probation.

Also Read: House Arrest vs Jail: Definition and Key Differences

What are the 3 Levels of Home Confinement?

The three levels of home confinement include:

  • Curfew - Home confinement usually includes an evening curfew. This limits when inmates can engage in activities off the property. However, the timing of the curfew can be flexible, especially if the offender has after-hour hours, like if they are required to work late.
  • Home Detention - Defined under 18 USCS Appx § 5F1.2 as a program of confinement and supervision that restricts the offender to their place of residence continuously, except for authorized absences, enforced by appropriate means of surveillance by the probation office. When home detention is imposed, the defendant is required to be in their residence at all times except for approved absences including employment, community service, religious services, medical care, and educational or training programs.
  • Home Incarceration - The most severe form of house confinement, home incarceration refers to cases in which the defendant is required to remain in the home at all times, with rare exceptions such as medical treatment or court-ordered correctional therapy such as drug abuse counseling.

Related Article: Early Termination of Probation

What is Electronic Monitoring?

Electronic monitoring is a type of digital incarceration, often in the form of a wrist or ankle bracelet which can monitor a subject’s location. Monitors are typically used as a condition of pretrial release or post-conviction supervision. They are sometimes used as a mechanism for reducing jail and prison populations.

Also Read: Completing Community Service in Denver After Court Order

What is Compassionate Release?

Compassionate release is a process by which inmates become eligible for immediate early release on grounds of "particularly extraordinary or compelling circumstances which could not reasonably have been foreseen by the court at the time of sentencing."

Prisoners qualify for compassionate release if they are at least 65 years old,
are experiencing a serious deterioration in physical or mental health due to age, and have served at least 10 years or 75% of the sentence, whichever is less.

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How Does Home Confinement Differ From Traditional Incarceration?

Home confinement differs from traditional incarceration by allowing individuals to serve their sentences at home under specific conditions and monitoring. Unlike traditional incarceration, where individuals are confined to a jail or prison, home confinement offers a less restrictive environment, enabling them to maintain certain aspects of their daily life while being monitored to ensure compliance with the terms of their confinement.

What Conditions Must Be Met for Someone to Qualify for Home Confinement?

The conditions that must be met for someone to qualify for home confinement depend on the nature of the offense, the individual's criminal history, and their risk to the community. Judges consider these factors before granting home confinement.

What Are the Restrictions of Home Incarceration?

The restrictions of home incarceration include having individuals remain at home at all times except for pre-approved activities like medical appointments or court appearances. Monitoring devices are often used to ensure compliance.

Can the Conditions of Home Confinement Be Adjusted?

Yes, the conditions of home confinement can be adjusted based on the individual's behavior, compliance with rules, and specific needs. Adjustments can be requested through legal channels and require approval from the supervising authority.

What Is the Difference Between Electronic Monitoring and Confinement?

The difference between electronic monitoring and confinement is that electronic monitoring uses devices like ankle bracelets to track an individual's location and ensure compliance with restrictions. Confinement, on the other hand, physically limits an individual's freedom, either through home confinement, where they must stay within their residence, or traditional incarceration in a jail or prison. Electronic monitoring can be a component of home confinement but primarily serves as a tool for monitoring rather than confinement itself.

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