Inmates are not permitted to have money in their possession. To facilitate their ability to make purchases, an inmate's money is held in an inmate account, which is opened for them upon arrival at the prison. Inmates' primary source of income while incarcerated generally comes from family contributions and prison-based employment. Inmates may use the money to buy items from the Commissary and pay fees and other debts.
Inmates incur certain costs which are deducted from their accounts. These deductions include medical co-payments for health-care service, doctor or dental visits, prescriptions, glasses, dentures, fines and child support. A percentage of funds contributed to an inmate's account may be used to fulfill any of these financial obligations with one exception. Child support is deducted from any wages earned while working in the prison.
The funds that remain are available for an inmate to spend.
Inmates generally do not need any financial contributions while incarcerated. However, if you would like to place money in an offender's account, you may do so through our contracted service provider accessible via AccessCorrections.com or by mail (see "How Do I ... ?" page under the "Family & Friends" section). You may also call 1-866-345-1884. You will need the offender's name and offender number and a valid credit card for Internet and phone transactions.
What may an inmate purchase?
Inmates are allowed to purchase items from the Commissary once each week. The Commissary offers a variety of items (food, hygiene, clothing, stamped envelopes, paper, etc.). The amount of Commissary items an inmate is allowed to purchase, as well as the type of items he or she is allowed to purchase, is dictated by housing facility and individual privilege level.
Will the inmate receive all the money I put on his/her books?
Often the answer is no. Inmate accounts are subject to certain deductions. It is the policy of the Utah Department of Corrections to help offenders manage their income and their debts. In regard to this policy, if an offender has unpaid debts on his/her account, the UDC may take up to 60 percent of all incoming funds to help satisfy all unpaid debts until the debts are paid in full, but will never be less than a $15 balance.
Money will also be taken from an offender’s account to satisfy any lien or garnishment that comes from the Office of Recovery Services (ORS), which will never leave less than a $5 balance.
Inmates are not denied services due to an inability to pay.
What about medical expenses?
Medical co-pays are posted to inmate accounts on a weekly basis. If there are sufficient funds in the account to cover co-pay costs, those funds will be deducted. If there are insufficient funds to cover the co-pay, a deduction will automatically be placed on the offender's account, which will take 60 percent of any incoming funds. Inmates are not denied medical services due to an inability to pay.
Will you tell me if/when my money is received?
There is only certain account information that may be shared by our Inmate Accounting staff. Staff can tell you if a money order/cashier's check has been received and placed in the account as long as you know the sender's name and amount of the money order/cashier's check. Staff will not provide information regarding an offender's account balance, how much an offender owes on deductions, who else might be placing funds on the offender's books or if the offender is sending any funds elsewhere.