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It is important for people to build support networks while incarcerated to strengthen their chances for success after release. Research conducted by the Minnesota Department of Corrections has shown that positive interactions with friends and family can lower recidivism.

Writing a Letter

Send Mail

How to send mail to incarcerated individuals:

Incoming Mail: With the exception of special/legal mail, incoming mail is opened and reviewed for the presence of contraband (i.e. drugs, tobacco, weapons, pornography). Incoming mail must include the incarcerated individuals commitment or department recognized legal name and Identification (OID) number.

Incoming mail may include: paper with words/drawings; photographs (Polaroid photos must have the backing removed); periodicals and published materials shipped from the publisher; and clippings or photocopies of published materials that meet criteria. Signed, commercial greeting cards and post cards are allowed, however cards that play music or have electronically recorded material on them are prohibited.

Incoming mail is limited to 16 ounces per item. A maximum of 20 photographs are allowed per envelope or mailing. A mailing is defined a two or more mailed items from the same sender received on the same day. Polaroid photographs must have the backing removed.

Send mail (not money) to:

Name and OID# (Identification Number)

MCF- (facility name where inmate is housed)

Facility Address

Special/Legal Mail: Special and legal mail may be sent or received in a sealed envelope. Incoming special/legal mail will be opened only in the presence of the incarcerated person. Staff may check the contents to ensure that the mail is legal or official in nature. Legal mail is logged. Legal mail includes correspondence to or from courts, court staff and attorneys.

Special mail includes correspondence to or from state and federal elected/appointed/regulatory agencies and officials.

Envelopes addressed to PO Box 1000 with a return address indicating "special" or "legal will be opened by corrections staff in the incarcerated person's presence. Please address all legal/special mail to their home facility address.

Un-allowed Mail: For safety and security purposes, the content of mail is regulated. Mail is denied that involves criminal activity; is identified as security threat group related; requests gifts or money from unrelated individuals, contain photos of staff, is coded material, contains unsanitary items such as hair, saliva, body secretions; certain sexually explicit situations including sexual intercourse, bodily excretory functions, sadism or bondage; personal photos displaying nudity by definition; and material advocating inferiority of an ethnic, racial or religious group.

Correspondence Review Authority: Each facility has a Correspondence Review Authority to review denied mail. Within a specified time frame, incarcerated individuals may request a review of their denied mail by the Correspondence Review Authority.

Forwarding Mail: First class mail and subscriptions will be forwarded for 60 days. After 60 days, or if a forwarding address is unavailable, the item will be returned to the sender.

Send Email

The Minnesota Department of Corrections has an online email system to help family and friends communicate with their loved one. The email system uses JPay. To send an email to an incarcerated person, please visit JPay to create an account and send letters electronically.

Before you can send an email, you will need their ID number.

Enter an inmate ID to get started

Send electronic messages

JPay provides a correctional electronic messaging system you can use to communicate with your loved one in a Minnesota state correctional facility. You can use your computer or smartphone to stay connected!

- Faster and more convenient than traditional mail
- Available on any computer and the JPay Mobile app
-Just 40 cents a stamp - less than first class postage!
- You can attach photos and eCards!

Answers to frequently asked questions about JPay Email can be found here.

More Information I-800-574-5729

Send Money

Incarcerated people do not need money for their day-to-day needs while incarcerated. Each facility provides all of the essential food, clothing and medical care necessary. However, there may be some personal care items and toiletries they may wish to purchase on his or her own. Additionally, they can buy snacks and items such as TV's, radios and hot pots at the facility canteen.

Incarcerated people are not allowed to receive money from another incarcerated individual/resident; or non-incarcerated people/residents still on paper supervision; or patients in other secure treatment facilities in Minnesota. Funds sent in violation of DOC policy will be placed in the incarcerated individual's HOLD account until his/her release. Funds placed in HOLD are subject to deductions.

A cost of confinement surcharge and, if applicable, a restitution surcharge will be deducted from funds received.

Search DOC Policy 300.100 for more information.

How to send money:

  • Electronic Funds Transfer -JPAY- subject to fees below
  • Money Orders and cashier's checks mailed to the lockbox - no charge, however must be mailed with a money order deposit form. Payable to Jpay: PO Box 246450, Pembroke Pines, FL 33024
  • Click the links below to download the form.
Enter incarcerated person's ID to get started

Money orders

Payable to JPay to: PO Box 246450, Pembroke Pines, FL 33024

Cash with moneygram_logo.png

At locations including CVS and Walmart (receive code 1279)



Deposit Amount




$0.01- $20.00




$20.01- $100.00




$100.01- $200.00




$200.01- $300.00




$300.01- $999.99








Funds are typically posted to the account the following business day during normal business hours (subject to depositor verification). Funds received by JPay with incomplete sender information will be held by JPay until claimed by the sender or escheated to the applicable state.

More information I 800.574.5729

All other payments, including government and business checks, tribal distributions, vendor refunds and payments enclosed with legal and special mail must be addressed to the incarcerated person's facility address. NO money orders or cashier's checks will be accepted at the facility address.

DOC staff cannot provide information to friends and family regarding an incarcerated person's financial transactions.

Send a Videogram

Videograms are 30-second videos that you can record on your computer or smart phone and send to an incarcerated person. The goal of offering this service is to help people maintain positive community ties with friends and family. Visit for more information on how you can send videograms.

Videograms are reviewed by JPay employees to ensure they meet MN DOC criteria before they are delivered to the incarcerated person. Click here to view the videogram rules. If your videogram is rejected, you will not receive a refund.

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