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How to get in contact with an inmate in North Carolina

2nd December 2020 Print

If one of your friends or family members has recently been convicted of a crime and was sent to a corrections facility in North Carolina, you may be confused about how you can keep in contact. The North Carolina prison complex provides multiple ways to maintain consistent contact with most inmates, including mail, packages, phone, and visits.

Sending Mail to Inmates

One of the most critical ways you can stay in contact with an inmate is through the written word. If you're looking for a prisoner in the North Carolina prison system, this is also an excellent way to find them because most prisons only require the name and their prior street address to find them. Letters won't be read unless there is a belief that it will include criminal activity or harm the inmate or other people within the facility.

If a guard reads legal mail, it'll be done in front of the inmate. Offenders must purchase their own stamps for a return letter, so add stamps or money within the package. Some inmates will get 10 stamps per month for free for personal letters.

Sending Books and Money

You can also send items to inmates if they are shipped directly from the publisher. Don't send the inmate's personal copy from home, or it could be rejected. It's recommended to not exceed three books, newspapers, or magazines at a time. All material needs to be in paperback and can't contain descriptions of nudity or how to create alcohol, drugs, or weapons.

Inmates that have funds within their accounts can purchase items from the commissary. Commissaries include food, clothing, hygiene items, stationery, electronics, and stamps. You can send funds through the Internet, by mail or phone, or by walk-in. Sending funds by mail is the slowest option, so if they need money right away, use the Internet.

Contact Inmates Through Phone Calls

While inmates cannot receive incoming calls for any reason, they can contact you with a few exceptions. If the inmate is located at Central Prison, has a high custody level, or a home assignment that restricts phone calls, they may not be able to contact you. Calls are monitored at all times. 

If you have a family emergency, you must contact the facility to explain the situation. If the facility deems this situation as urgent, they will tell the inmate to call you back.

Contact Inmates Through Visitation

To visit an inmate in North Carolina, you have to fill out an application that must be returned to the facility where the inmate is currently housed. Applicants 16 or higher must use a Government Issue ID with a picture to confirm entry. You may be rejected from visitation if you have a prior criminal record or provide false information on your application.

Each inmate is allowed 18 approved visits at no more than one visiting session a week that doesn't exceed two hours. Only immediate family members will be approved for visitation.

Violations of visiting privileges could result in disciplinary actions for the inmate, and those with severe medical conditions must go through the facility superintendent first. 

The dress code during visitation is strictly enforced. Any clothing considered inappropriately revealing won't be allowed; neither are dresses, skirts, or shorts three inches above the kneecap. Profanity on shirts, spandex, and gang paraphernalia will also be rejected.

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