View Full Version : How much money does an inmate need?


Luus
01-10-2009, 04:41 AM
Hi!

I am Luus (Lucia) from the Netherlands and I write with an inmate in Menard who does not have anyone to financially support him.
I'm willing to send him $50 monthly, but he suggests he would need $150 to live comfortably.
Can anyone give me some advice on this?
Thanks very much.

olddominion
01-12-2009, 08:06 AM
Luus,

The answer is "it depends." The prison provides the minium and with budgets crumbling that isn't much. I don't know how well or how long you have known the inmate you are writing to, but if $50 is what you can afford, then just send that much. I send $100 a month, magazines and books, but that is to my ex-husband who I have known for 50 years.

Just be careful with your money. There are prisoners who solicit women pen pals, have several of them who they take advantage of, and ask for money from each of them.

Luus
01-13-2009, 10:31 AM
Thank you so much for your advice. I also write with an inmate in California and also send him $50 a month and he's happy with it, so I will also send the one in Menard the same amount for he has no one else to support him.

kylee23
01-13-2009, 10:36 AM
jail's not supposed to be comfortable.$50 will allow him to buy toiletries and some extra food. he needs to be thankful for what you can do

Jillian
01-13-2009, 10:43 AM
If i am not mistaken they get paid for working in the Il prisons don't they?

santoswifeyy
01-14-2009, 01:15 AM
They do get paid for working in IL prisons, and I also agree with what was said previously.. If he has noone else to help financially then he should be grateful for what he can get.

rayswifey
01-15-2009, 08:53 PM
it would depend because my boyfriend does not like to eat the food that they provide and he aslo needs money for toiletries and writeouts but he knows that i can't afford to send him money like and he understands becasue i'm not going to go steal and end up ijn prison myself becasue then who's going to take care of who. he has to be grateful that he has someone that in willing to send him anything and he has to make the best of it and get what he needs not what he wants.

jew
01-15-2009, 10:57 PM
Luus

Not all inmate woke in prison but the state give each inmate $10.00 a month to buy things they need what ever you give he should be thankful for it
jew

GABRIEL'S ANGEL
02-10-2009, 09:09 AM
This is crazy, cause me and my man just had this conversation. He wants me to send him $75 a month, so that he can get food and etc that he needs. He is very picky and i do not want him to starve, but that is a lot of $, and i explained that i would send what i could. But was unaware that the state gives them 10.00/month and that he could get paid to work, so we will be having to discuss this!!! This is my first time having to go through any of this, but regardless of my love for him i did not put him in there. I will support him as much as i can but can not lose the roof over my head and etc while he is gone either. I mean it used to be us splitting mostly down the middle and now there is only me tryn to pay everything, so i tried to remind him of that and the fact that he wont be there forever and will need something to come home to....

Jillian
02-10-2009, 09:20 AM
This is crazy, cause me and my man just had this conversation. He wants me to send him $75 a month, so that he can get food and etc that he needs. He is very picky and i do not want him to starve, but that is a lot of $, and i explained that i would send what i could. But was unaware that the state gives them 10.00/month and that he could get paid to work, so we will be having to discuss this!!! This is my first time having to go through any of this, but regardless of my love for him i did not put him in there. I will support him as much as i can but can not lose the roof over my head and etc while he is gone either. I mean it used to be us splitting mostly down the middle and now there is only me tryn to pay everything, so i tried to remind him of that and the fact that he wont be there forever and will need something to come home to....

I was like this when my brother and sister in law went into IDOC. I was already to send money cause I thought it was the same as Tx where they don't get paid at all they just work. Thank god for PTO cause it helped me realize that if and when i do send that i dont need to go over board. I send my husband (in tx and doesn't get paid) maybe 150 for xmas, his birthday and a little something for father's day. He makes it last .

As far as your loved one let him know that he need to remember taht just because you are in the free world nothing is free. You have bills that will not wait for you to come up with money if you send him too much .

tweedybird
02-10-2009, 07:43 PM
State pay is supposed to be $10 a month and has been, for years. They have raised the prices at commissary but state pay actually went down a little to $9 something. Also, when the prisons are on lockdown ( menard is on lockdown OFTEN) they do not get the per diem for that time. If you have a job that pays anything you don't get the state pay. My husband was working full time for years and got under $30 per month. If you are taking a class, you can't work. Often there are waiting lists for jobs and only some inmates are eligible to work.

joshsmom
02-10-2009, 08:23 PM
My son said the same thing. By the time he gets his money for his job, he may be home! I do $50.00 because the phone calls and visits are a small fortune too!

vtco
03-15-2009, 11:08 AM
Some state pay is 14.80 a month and others get 28.80 a month, unless you are lucky and work in the industries program. Most offenders get either the 14 or the 28 dollars per month.

shorte1813
03-15-2009, 09:52 PM
Thank u so much for ur guys posts i am new at this and my husband was completly supports us i get a lil from unemployment but is not near enough to pay our bills and i was so worried about him if i could not send him enough i was afraid that he would have nothing not even enough to write me

chris idoc
03-19-2009, 07:30 PM
Hi,
I don't want to come off negative but I have worked in IDOC since 1983 in several positions. First I noticed that you said you were sending 50.00 a month to another person in CA as well as this person in IL. I would recommend that you keep your 100.00 per month in the Netherlands and find you someone local. There are way to many people who are locked up that use pen pal sites to get money from good hearted people. Imagine if the person your are sending money to in CA or IL has 10 people just like you that are sending them 50.00 a month. When they get out they will have money for a car or apartment with some left over. Obviously you are an adult and free to do what you want with your money but I would caution you to expect that you maybe dissabointed with your investment. God Bless and Good Luck!

BeenThereIL
03-28-2009, 09:53 AM
I was in IL DOC 3 times...15 months for burglary 1989...36 months for residential burglary in 1992...and 6 months for damage to state supported property in 2004...been all over the IL DOC landscape and never ever heard of any state pay that is less than $15 per month

fact is an inmate recieving $50 a month from outside is in the top 1/3 to 1/4 of the income bracket....they would be comfortable...as for the "jobs", at least 90% of the inmates make $15/month...and of the 10% who hold higher paying jobs most of them make 20-45 with the majority being closer to 20 than 45...hope this helps

i plan on sticking around to help provide insight into what is fact and what is fiction

tweedybird
03-28-2009, 10:50 AM
Luus, it is outrageous for that menard inmate to ask you to send $150/mo. I do have a lot of penpals and might occassionally send $10 or $20 for their birthday. I send a few stamps to my FL penpals who do not get state pay.

As far as lots of people sending them money, ask for a print out of their account for the last year or two!

tweedybird
03-28-2009, 10:52 AM
I was in IL DOC 3 times...15 months for burglary 1989...36 months for residential burglary in 1992...and 6 months for damage to state supported property in 2004...been all over the IL DOC landscape and never ever heard of any state pay that is less than $15 per month

fact is an inmate recieving $50 a month from outside is in the top 1/3 to 1/4 of the income bracket....they would be comfortable...as for the "jobs", at least 90% of the inmates make $15/month...and of the 10% who hold higher paying jobs most of them make 20-45 with the majority being closer to 20 than 45...hope this helps

i plan on sticking around to help provide insight into what is fact and what is fiction

In have seen accounts from stateville , menard and tamms and it was $10 a month or less.

BeenThereIL
03-28-2009, 05:38 PM
In have seen accounts from stateville , menard and tamms and it was $10 a month or less.Perhaps there are extenuating circumstances that create this or even budget tightening in the 5 years since my last incarceration...I take you at your word that you know for certain that the $15/month minimum that I was familiar with is no longer the rule...nonetheless, I'm sure you agree that asking for $150/month is ridiculous

mrs wB
05-20-2009, 11:52 PM
i send my fiance what i can i work some over time sometimes to try and support him he doesent wasnt me to send anything but i do, but when he gets out he will be taking care of me so its an even exchange , but yes your friend should be happy you send anything if you didnt he still wouldnt have anything lol

stasiasmama26
07-21-2009, 09:36 AM
my bf works in there at sheridan and makes 14.80 a month! thank god for his mom sending him money! cuz otherwise he would be broke! :-)

MaddieWard
07-22-2009, 12:44 AM
$50.00 a month will allow him to be comfortable and if he needs something, ie clothes or shoes in winter he can tell you

His_BossLady
10-03-2009, 11:19 AM
My man is in Danville and i send him $200 a month so he can buy food and whatever else he needs.And that sometimes isnt enough. Its hard in there.

MARKELL
10-16-2009, 11:36 AM
An inmate gets up to 50 dollars a month for pay so i advise 50 or less and he'll be fine.

Kemo'sWife
12-10-2009, 04:43 AM
My husband Kemo is also in Danville and I send him $100 a month and that's still not enough

seagrtj
12-14-2009, 03:07 PM
$100 a month is enough, it is just how your man spends it. I lived on $30 a month while I was inside. so don't let them tell you it isn't enough. they just want more so they can buy more snacks and noodles.

snowblind
12-14-2009, 03:18 PM
Hi!

I am Luus (Lucia) from the Netherlands and I write with an inmate in Menard who does not have anyone to financially support him.
I'm willing to send him $50 monthly, but he suggests he would need $150 to live comfortably.
Can anyone give me some advice on this?
Thanks very much.

In Colorado the prison system takes 20% off the top of whatever anyone sends - or if they have a job in the prison and are paid. My man also wants $150 to live comfortably, but I send him about $60 a month. He can make 4 phone calls a month - and they cost $5 each. The rest goes to hygiene and whatever else he desires. He knows I'm on a limited budget, but it doesn't stop him from asking for more...

DianeDavis
12-14-2009, 09:35 PM
$100 a month is enough, it is just how your man spends it. I lived on $30 a month while I was inside. so don't let them tell you it isn't enough. they just want more so they can buy more snacks and noodles.

I agree. My man just got there two weeks ago. I imagine that I will need to send at least $60 or $70 the first time, but after that I'm only gonna send $50 a month. He sent me the commissary list & unless he needs something of significance, then I'm sure that'll be plenty.


I have already began to budget out his needs just by looking at the commissary list & prices. So I will make out his little budget & send it to him with his next letter.


If he should need anything in between times, then I will send it. Other than that...I'm sure the $50 will do :thumbsup:

rayswifey
12-14-2009, 11:53 PM
$100 a month is enough, it is just how your man spends it. I lived on $30 a month while I was inside. so don't let them tell you it isn't enough. they just want more so they can buy more snacks and noodles.

I have to agree i think that they can survive on about 30-50 a month. There is not much that one needs besides the basics. My ex needed more because he refused to eat the food and had to buy his own. I didn't support the habit because you know what the consequences of your actions are when you commit the crime so why do it if you want to live the good life in prison.

Kemo'sWife
12-18-2009, 12:09 AM
$100 a month is enough, it is just how your man spends it. I lived on $30 a month while I was inside. so don't let them tell you it isn't enough. they just want more so they can buy more snacks and noodles.

You are absolutly right..Lol he does buy a lot of snacks and noodles... He hates eating the slop they serve cuz the soy messes wit his stomach but yeah $100 is plenty...He enjoys going to the store and he can't go if he got under $2 on his books.

akaptrosa
12-24-2009, 10:10 AM
I send my man about fifty a month and actually I do think he could use more. They have to pay for everything. They get two pair of socks a year. I couldn't tell you how many pair I buy in a year, but I know it's way more than 2! They have to buy laundry soap, etc. I asked him about people who don't have outside support and he said they are dirty and suffering. He claims a lot of people don't take care of themselves and can't afford to. If I had more money to send I would.

Henna
04-01-2010, 11:20 AM
I have a penpal in IL and I usually send him 20 $ a month. I just got a letter in which he told me not to send anything in April because enough is left. He doesn't work and he's ashamed that he needs money from other people.

seagrtj
04-01-2010, 12:06 PM
that just shows he appreciates the money you do send him. If he didn't he would not feel guilty about it. I offer this to you, if you can spare the money, send it to him anyway and just tell him that you are glad you can help him out. if money is tight for you, then don't send it. be glad you have someone who appreciates your help. there are so many guys in there who EXPECT it and don't appreciate it.

zingo1963
05-05-2010, 07:26 AM
Hi!

I am Luus (Lucia) from the Netherlands and I write with an inmate in Menard who does not have anyone to financially support him.
I'm willing to send him $50 monthly, but he suggests he would need $150 to live comfortably.
Can anyone give me some advice on this?
Thanks very much.
I have to suggest that you are being taken advantage of...
I know what is available in prison, especially Menard, and there is NOTHING he can buy that would cost $150 a month, unless he is involved in something illegal, or makes crafts/artwork. $50 a month is more than enough for anyone to survive in Illinois prisons per month.
Seriously? $150 to live comfortably per month? In prison, $150 per month is like being rich. They don't sell that much anymore on the commissary...what is he buying that costs that much?

Ginger H
05-20-2010, 10:02 PM
I can't speak for Menard, but I can't believe it would be worlds apart from Jacksonville, where my boyfriend is. The pay from the job he has is only $15/month. I send him a little when I can $10-$15 every couple of weeks, which he says is plenty. He says that's more than enough for toiletries, write outs, paper, vitamins & supplements, and a little extra food for when he misses breakfast. He's told me about guys in there that insist their families send them $150-$200/month or more. Sadly, these guys are buying tons of junk food & other snacks, using it to buy the newest shoes and such they get in (one in particular has 9 pars of shoes & they're only supposed to have 2), or spend it on a flat screen tv they just got in when they had a perfectly good regular tv that they'd only had for a few months. From everything I've seen & heard, I agree with the others who posted $30-$50/month is plenty to live comfortably on. The only exception would be the occasional more expensive needs, like shoes. The commissary isn't always stocked very well, and they tend to run out of things that are a common size and not re-order frequently. A decent pair of tennis shoes is $60+, but it isn't like they need a new pair every month.

toodletruck
05-24-2010, 05:13 PM
I agree. The guy I support is thrilled with 20 a month. Every now and then send extra 20 and he is exicted. He say 30 is perfect.

Tuesday123
05-24-2010, 05:17 PM
Im glad he was honest to say what works for him to live comfortably, it is my understand most places have a 300 a month cap.

Send what you are comfortable sending.

My guy is in county awaiting sentencing, and his cap is 160 a week (thats county for you) but he told me 25 a week is sufficient, and I see he is spending less than that.

He can also send you a printout of his wish list so to speak and you can decide if you want to purchase something he may need.











Hi!

I am Luus (Lucia) from the Netherlands and I write with an inmate in Menard who does not have anyone to financially support him.
I'm willing to send him $50 monthly, but he suggests he would need $150 to live comfortably.
Can anyone give me some advice on this?
Thanks very much.

seagrtj
05-26-2010, 08:53 AM
I never heard or seen a $300/month cap on commissary. I saw quite a few guys who spent well over that in a month. Some guys would spend that much in 2 weeks. I was a poor one inside. I only got about $30 - $50 a month if I was lucky

rhewsbbgurl
06-09-2010, 01:52 PM
Rhew says that $50 is more than enough an I have noticed every 3rd month he tells me $25 will do he has left over. So yea I dont get the $150 that is crazy!

kieri
06-09-2010, 05:07 PM
I wish Kennie would LET me send him money. We are MWI, and he wants to make VERY sure I know it isn't about money for him. Also, he feels bad about they money I spend on phone calls and visits.