Telephone calls are more expensive than at home and are monitored by facility staff. The inmate is permitted to make phone calls depending on his/her location and custody level. Currently, the inmate can only call you collect, so you will have to pay for the call. Find out what the rate per minute is to accept a call. Recently enacted legislation will permit another method of payment. The inmate will have a choice of calling collect or prepaying for his/her calls by taking the money from his/her account. The inmate will still not be able to use phone cards. The inmate is assigned specified hours for use of the telephone and are given a specified amount of time to talk.
If you cannot afford to accept collect telephone calls from the inmate, write to him/her and explain why you cannot accept his/her calls every time he/she calls. Some families have lost their long distance calling service or had the telephone company block their ability to accept collect calls because they were unable to refuse to accept calls they really could not afford.
It is against the rules for you to place a third party call when you are talking with the inmate. This is considered a misuse of the phone system. Misuse of the phone system or other violations of the rules may result in the inmate not being allowed to use the telephone. It is considered a privilege for the inmate to place telephone calls.
1. Telephone calls using the AITS must either be collect in accordance with 66 Pa. C.S. §2907, where the cost of the telephone call must be borne by the called party, or through pre-paid calls purchased by the inmate.
2. Pre-paid calls may be purchased in the commissary in $10, $15, $25, or $50 amounts, not to exceed a $100 limit per week.
3. A call placed under exceptional circumstances as stated in Subsection D. above, must be collect or paid for by the inmate. A regular facility telephone may be used only when such a call cannot be made on the AITS. Prior to placing a non-collect call, the inmate must sign a cash slip authorizing the deduction from his/her account. If the inmate is indigent, has no funds currently available, and a collect call is not feasible, the cost shall be charged to the inmate’s account and the debt will be satisfied as funds are deposited to his/her account.
Obtaining Telephone Privileges
1. An inmate will be permitted to place a call on the Automated Inmate Telephone System (AITS) within 72 hours of initial reception or recommitment as a parole violator. The inmate will be required to have an Inmate Personal Identification Number (IPIN) to access the system. The length of the call is limited to 15 minutes.
2. A list of every approved telephone number shall be established during the initial classification period and recorded on the DC-8A, Inmate Telephone Authorization Form (Attachment 2-A). A copy of the DC-8A will be kept in the inmate’s record.
3. The inmate must sign the DC-8A verifying that he/she has read, or has had read to him/her, the provisions of this policy. Failure to sign the form will result in denial of inmate telephone privileges.
4. An individual inmate telephone list is limited to 20 active telephone numbers.
5. An attorney’s telephone number is to be listed separately on the DC-8A, and is not counted against the total of 20. The attorney must be representing the inmate and the relationship must be verifiable. The attorney telephone number must be verifiable and these calls will not be recorded or monitored.1
6. The complete name, relationship, telephone number, and street address of every person whom the inmate wishes to call must be listed on the DC-8A. A P.O. Box may be considered a valid address. An incomplete form will be returned to the inmate without action.
7. The inmate may request to add or delete from his/her approved list of telephone numbers monthly using the DC-8B, Supplementary Authorized Inmate Telephone Numbers Form (Attachment 2-B). A copy of the DC-8B, verifying that he/she has had or has read to him/her the provisions of this policy. Failure to sign the form will result in denial of inmate telephone privileges.
8. The inmate may place calls when he/she receives a computer listing of the telephone numbers which have been entered into the AITS under his/her IPIN.
9. The IPIN number issued to the inmate is considered confidential. The loaning, borrowing, or theft of that number is prohibited and will result with any involved inmate receiving a misconduct, and loss of telephone privileges.