In Maricopa County, jails do not allow inmates to carry cash with them while they are serving their sentence. Because of this, inmates are provided trust accounts that can hold money for them. These trust accounts, sometimes called ‘books’, keep the funds that can be deposited by friends and family. When money is added to the account, inmates are able to access the jail’s commissary.
The Maricopa County jail commissary is a small store within the jail that offers a variety products such as snacks, hygiene products, and correspondence materials. That is not the only way that inmates can use their deposits; they can also be used for making medical co-pays, copies, buying phone minutes, making charitable contributions, and legal fees.
Inmates that do not have funds deposited can apply for indigent status, and once approved will be given a small pack of supplies. Another way that inmates are able to receive money in jail is by earning wages through the Arizona Department of Correction’s work program. All inmates that are fit to work are assigned jobs. The wages that are earned are deposited into their books as well.
Options for Adding Money on Books
The Maricopa County Department of Corrections allows money to be deposited in several ways. Fees for deposits vary, and so does the time it takes to get to the inmate. There are enough options, though, that you can find a form of depositing that works best for you.
It should be noted that if the deposit of funds is more than $300, there is a 10 day waiting period on the part of the Department of Corrections to make sure the funds are cleared by the institution that was used to send it.
TouchPay Direct is the transfer institution that the Maricopa Sheriff’s Office uses for inmate deposits. TouchPay Kiosks are located in the lobby of the jails where you can make the deposits. The kiosks accept VISA cards, MasterCard, and cash. If the kiosks are in the jails, the money is immediately transferred in the inmate’s account and there is no waiting time for them.
When making a payment outside of the jail, you can call or deposit online. To make a payment over the phone, call toll-free at 1-866-355-9593. For online deposits, visit https://www.gtlfsonlinepay.com/portal/. Before you are able to make a payment, you have to create an account of their website that asks for your full name, email address, address, the last four numbers of your social security, and date of birth.
If you are more comfortable making a payment in person but can’t get to the jail, there are kiosks located throughout the valley. There are not very many, but there is typically at least one in every city. These valley kiosks can be found at http://touchpayonline.com/locator.
Arizona Department of Correction’s Options
There are three options for friends and family to use for adding funds to the accounts of inmates that are serving time in the Arizona Department of Corrections jails. They are JPAY Inc., Global Tel-Link, and Keefe Group. All three of these companies offer three ways to deposit funds: over the phone, online, and in person.
The cost of transactions with these companies vary from $1.00 to $9.95. The fees also depend on if you are making the deposit over the phone, in person, or online. The Department of Corrections has a pricing sheet online in order to help you make the best financial decision for yourself and your inmates.
A unique feature of JPay is that they are partnered with MoneyGram to give customers a larger number of locations to deposit in person at MoneyGram locations across the valley. MoneyGram kiosks can commonly be found at drug stores, Wal-Marts, and Albertson’s.
At MoneyGram Kiosks, you can use cash, credit, or debit cards to make a deposit into the account. It should be known that credit cards may incur a cash advance fee or added interest from the banking institution. You are required to present a valid, verified ID like a state ID. MoneyGram is a national institution that works with multiple department of corrections agencies across the country. In order to send the funds to an inmate in Maricopa County, you must use the code 1237 and have their inmate identification number. Upon deposit, the money is then received by the inmate within 24 hours.
Money Taken Away from Inmates
When you put money on books in jail, there are reasons that the jail has for taking away the funds from the inmates. Court ordered reinstitution can be deducted from both wages and the monies deposited. If the inmate commits any infractions that cause damage to the jail’s property or a person can have deposits garnished in order to pay for repairs and medical expenses. If in inmate tries to escape, money can also be taken away to pay for the cost of reincarnation. Filing fees may also be taken from wages earned.
A common misconception is that child support debts can be taken away from money deposited by friends and family. This, however, is not entirely true. The wages that the inmate earns through the worker program are the portion of the funds that can be taken away to pay for Child Support.
Need Help with a Maricopa County Criminal Case?
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Call the JacksonWhite Criminal Law team at (480) 467-4370 to discuss your case today.