View Full Version : IC Solutions-Only getting half of my $ now!!

09-12-2007, 09:00 AM
Thanks to some information I received here, I have been able to cut my phone bills by more than half. I'm in Illinois but support a child in Mississippi (Walnut Grove Juvenile Facility). For him to call me it was costing (incl. taxes) $19.97 per 15 minute call. We got a little less than 3 phone calls out of a $50.00 ($60 incl. taxes) deposit on the prepaid account with IC Solutions. (if you deposit $50 they waive the $4.95 processing fee, which you pay every time you deposit less than $50.) Brett calls about 8x a month which is only a couple days per week but the bills were about $200/month. He only gets a visitor about every 4 weeks and sometimes 16 or 24 weeks if his family blows him off, which they do alot. So 8 calls isn't much for a child to talk to someone who cares. The taxes are more than any phone company charges. How do they get away with that?

MY SOLUTION: (to IC Solutions Ripoff)
Since Brett can call a cell phone, I obtained a Mississippi phone number on a prepaid account with T-Mobile. Now he can call me at the Mississippi rate of .25/minute instead of .89/minute. If he calls in the evening or weekends it goes down to .19/minute. The $9.97 in taxes I pay every time I deposit $50 in the prepaid account is spread over 8 calls instead of 3. So, I'm a happy camper now (well sort of, it would be better if he was home, but...) I'm a happier camper.

I would advise anyone who is out of state and the inmate can call a cell to do the same thing if the rates are different for in-state and out-of-state calls. I have to go through IC Solutions because my phone company (Comcast) won't do third party collect calls from a company like IC Solutions, so I have no choice but to prepay. But I think this is even cheaper than collect in state. The prepaid phone card with T-Mobile is .10/minute if you purchase $100 or 1,000 minutes and you get 15% more minutes every time you add. Or you can get 400 minutes for $50 which is about .12/minute (next best value). The $100 sounds like a lot at one time, but it comes to .10/minute and will give me 66 calls which I know we will use because this child is serving Life (you have a year to use them). I'm better off paying the $100 up front and getting the lowest per minute rate plus automatically am eligible for the %15 free minutes in the gold club (or something like that). I'm a happy member of the Gold Club. Thanks to my little prisoner. Maybe we could do a commercial for T-Mobile. The Gold Member Prisoner Club! Run it during the Super Bowl! ("get more out of a child serving Life, join the Gold Club") hehehehe. So now our calls are .19 + .10 (t-mobile minutes) = .29/minute compared to .89/minute out of state (even the IC Solutions high tax rate is diluted from $3/call to $1.25/call.

When I started researching this, I met a few roadblocks with T-mobile trying to add a MS line to my family plan for $9/month since you can add up to 5 lines and I only had 4 (the best deal of all) but all area codes have to be the same in the family plan. So unless I switched all 4 lines to MS from IL, they wouldn't allow it. So I went with the prepaid acccount.

Thanks to whoever posted this suggestion. I was just reading posts one day and ran across this. I think it came from someone in New Jersey. I hope this will help someone else too. I knew there was a solution and it wouldn't come from IC Solutions. In fact the other day when I deposited money down their "dumper", I told the operator that I got a MS # and now they won't be getting so much of my money, she said "oh you figured it out huh?" Damn straight I did! Thanks to this forum.

09-12-2007, 01:26 PM
Actually, IC Solutions says that the phone company sets the rates, not IC Solutions. So I correct myself when I say IC Solutions won't be getting as much of my money. Although I'm sure they get more than their fair share, what I meant to say is the phone company (whichever one or ones are being used) will gleefully be getting less of my money. I sure would like to know what IC Solutions takes from all of this. I'm assuming it is the $2.50 connection fee and the 4.95 processing fee per call, plus half of the over-inflated taxes they charge on prepaid deposits which is why the taxes are so high, they include profit for IC. I know Western Union is getting a chunk from folks who have to wire the money to IC Solutions.

It's all part of the racket known as the prison industrial complex (a 6 billion dollar a year industry-all tax payer funded). And tell me again, where is society benefitting? No where, in fact losing. :confused:

I hope the ACLU eventually gets to Mississippi and sues the phone companies for blatently ripping off inmates and their families. In Florida the phone companies who facilitate the prisons were sued by the ACLU and won reducing Florida inmate phone calls to $5.00 per call.

09-12-2007, 05:44 PM
Thanks to Savebrettjones for the detailed info.

PLEASE be CERTAIN the facility you are dealing with allows cell phone calls. SMCI, CMCF and MSP do NOT. Your loved one can lose phone privileges if they call a cell phone. They do check randomly and do cut the number from access if discovered to be a cell.

Before you go to the expense..ASK.

Walnut Grove is a privately run Facility and rules vary in the private and regionals.

all my best

09-29-2007, 11:28 PM
Regarding usage of a cell phone. . . At CMCF you can have a cell number put on your phone list. But we had to have pre-paid minutes through Global Tel Link, which is the phone company that is mainly used in CMCF.

SaveBrettJones: I would love more information about that law suit in Florida. Because while I was incarecerated, I know we spent $200-$300 a month on phone bills. And some of those calls were cut off through no fault of our own, but we get charged anyway. I could imagine what other families have spent in phone bills over the years.

09-30-2007, 08:52 AM
Please see my previous post. I have verified with MDOC that it is not allowed for an inmate to call a cell phone. The number may make it to the list somehow, but it can also be cut without any warning at all if and when they discover it is a cell.

10-21-2007, 09:04 PM
the cell number was approved. I don't know if he mentioned it was a cell or not, but so far it has been working fine. He has been calling on a cell # all along. This is Walnut Grove Juvenile Facility so that's the only place I know about. I'm not going to make waves about it, just count my blessings.

As far as the law suit in Florida, I don't know much about it other than it was fairly recently and was filed by the ACLU and phone charges went down to around $5.00 per call. Maybe you could do a Google search.

01-13-2008, 01:23 PM
Just had my # changed to a # local to my man. It cut our cost by two thirds. Hopefully we won't have any problems with it.

09-05-2008, 07:38 PM
ok I know this post I am responding to is old (2007) but I am trying to figure this all out. See i am in virginia and he is in Mississippi. I have a mississippi phone # as well and now the calls are about $7.00. It of course is through Global Tel Link. They require you to at least put $25.00 on the phone. I call and do it through debit but it still costs me over $4 for the tax or fee or whatever it is called that Mississippi charges. If I put $25.00 on there I really only get $20.00 and that allows us to talk about 3X. He has no family or anyone he knows there and I can only afford to go about every 2 months. It is very expensive if you r a "single" parent. NE way I wish I could figure out how to make the calls even cheaper. i was reading someones post and they said they pay $1.80 a call!! I would love that. NE suggestions?

09-08-2008, 06:23 AM
You can put up to $500 on the phone by mailing a money order to GTL with no additional fees.

05-04-2009, 07:43 PM
I live in Illinois, my friend Robert lives in Florida. Lives meaning is in jail in Florida. I am going through IC Solutions right now with the whole $50 prepaid thing. So you're saying if I get a T-Mobile prepaid card with area code of where he is located, he can just call that phone number instead and we talk like normal all we want (obviously in 15 minute sections) until my prepaid minutes run??? If so, how much did a T-Mobile prepay phone cost you? Was there an activation fee?