When an offender is released from prison, they will be subject to licence conditions for the remainder of their sentence (for example, someone sentenced to four years imprisonment will be released after two years but will be on licence for the second half of their sentence). If someone breaches their licence conditions, their licence can be revoked and they will be returned to prison to continue serving their sentence.

Every prisoner released is subject to seven standard licence conditions. They must:

  • be of good behaviour and not behave in a way which undermines the purpose of the licence period;
  • not commit any offence;
  • keep in touch with the supervising officer in accordance with instructions given by the supervising officer;
  • receive visits from the supervising officer in accordance with instructions given by the supervising officer;
  • reside permanently at an address approved by the supervising officer and obtain the prior permission of the supervising officer for any stay of one or more nights at a different address;
  • not undertake work, or a particular type of work, unless it is approved by the supervising officer and notify the supervising officer in advance of any proposal to undertake work or a particular type of work;
  • not travel outside the United Kingdom, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man except with the prior permission of your supervising officer or for the purposes of immigration deportation or removal.

Licences can also have additional conditions to supplement the standard conditions. Any additional licence condition must be proportionate, reasonable and necessary. Additional licence conditions must fall within the following nine categories:

  • residence at a specified place;
  • restriction of residency;
  • making or maintaining contact with a person;
  • participation in, or co-operation with, a programme or set of activities;
  • possession, ownership, control or inspection of specified items or documents;
  • disclosure of information;
  • curfew arrangement;
  • freedom of movement;
  • supervision in the community by the supervising officer, or other responsible officer, or organisation.

The Prison Reform Trust provides excellent explanations of licence conditions and recall for both determinate sentence prisoners and indeterminate sentence prisoners.