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Federal Prison Self Surrendering Information Information about Federal Prisons and Self-Surrendering to the BOP.

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Old 10-02-2012, 12:56 PM
Terrene Terrene is offline
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Default Money For Commissary-how much should I deposit when I SS?

How much money shouild I carry when I report to Montgomery for the commissary account. Should I take a money order or cash. Thanks.
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Old 10-02-2012, 08:35 PM
fbopnomore fbopnomore is offline
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Here's a link to the Montgomery bop page. Check the commissary list for things you will need to purchase right away. Sweats, athletic shoes, radio or MP3 player to watch TV, OTC Medicines, toiletries, whatever. The monthly commissary spending limit is about $320.00 and 300 long distance phone minutes cost $69.00. Any money you deposit will remain in your account until you spend it.

Money you take with you will have to be sent to the lock box in Iowa to be posted to your account, which could take days or weeks. Any money order except US Postal will be held an additional 15 days after it is deposited. Once you know your bop inmate number, XXXXX-XXX, and you are actually in a bop prison, money can be deposited to your account by anyone. The fastest way for it to be available to you is to have someone on the outside send the money by Western Union as soon as you self surrender and are processed in.
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Old 10-02-2012, 09:29 PM
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Tunabear Tunabear is offline
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If you can afford it, buy a couple of postal money orders (a thousand dollars each isn't too much) and give them to a friend.

On the day you're processed in to your new facility, have your friend wire a few hundred bucks to your new account via WE or MONEYGRAM. That will enable you to purchase shower shoes, bar soap, snacks and other essentials at your first shopping opportunity with no trouble at all.

A few weeks later, have your freind mail the postal money orders to the Iowa address (see fbopnomore's post above). That way you can comfortably provide for yourself indefinitely without becoming a mooch on others. You'll also have peace of mind knowing you can always buy stamps, new clothes and other things whenever you need them. (I also bought extra Cokes and candy bars and became a part-time store man, but that's another story)

VERY IMPORTANT: Don't ever let anyone read your commissary receipts showing your balance! If some guys learn that you have a fat account, you'll start getting unwanted "attention" pronto.

If you don't have that much $$ to spend on yourself, that's okay. Have your friend deposit as much as you can give him, via WE or MONEYGRAM, on the day you are processed in. Then, after you go through orientation, start looking for a "high-paying" prison job (what a joke). UNICOR jobs pay the best (upwards of $200/mo. I worked up to a clerk job in Facilities that brought in about $45 a month. That should take care of your most pressing needs.

I hope this is helpful.
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Old 10-08-2012, 02:47 AM
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Faith=sanity Faith=sanity is offline
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I had a completely different experience. I walked in with money. They took it, gave me a receipt and it was on my books within 4 hours.

The depositing all of the money into your account at once is a VERY VERY bad idea if you have restitution to pay. They will base the quarterly amount of your restitution on the average balance of your commissary over 6 months. I recommend putting in a little at a time. If you have no restitution to pay then it's not an issue.

I had money deposited monthly by family but I wasn't down very long. Good luck to you. See you on the other side!
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