U. S. State Prisons' Information

Fifty States and 50+ sets of rules.

What is allowed.

Who is allowed to ship.

How many books/magazines are allowed.  

Check out your state's regulations below.

If your loved one is in a county jail, look at the county web page or call the jail for regulations.

 If your loved one is allowed to receive books from bookstores

Shop here for books, magazine subscriptions, used comics, puzzles and calendars.

Magazine subscriptions are shipped from the publishers and permitted for inmates of all states.

 As authorities can and will change their policies, we cannot guarantee that all information is up to date.

  Please contact us 

with corrected, additional or current information if you find inaccurate, incomplete or outdated information on this site. 


 Wikipedia, The Free Encylcopedia, for general information about all US State prisons.

How to send books to prison?

There is no one perfect rule for mailing books to all prisons. 

It is vital that families and friends familiarize themselves with the rules for their loved one's prison.

Inmate ID numbers are required by most facilities. Please include the SID or other inmate number. These can often be looked up from the links on our US State Prisons pages.

Use the inmate's name as it is known by the prison. In most cases, prisons will not deliver mail if the names and numbers do not match.

Most prisons have rules against books with certain types content. For example: prison escape or language that might lead to prison unrest, specific sexual content (such as rape, sex with minors, S&M, incest, necrophilia, or homosexual sex), drug/bomb/weapon manufacturing, racial content, gang or criminal content

Some prisons will allow bookstores to send books, while other prisons require books to come directly from the publisher, and some limit to established bookstores with physical locations, but no "resellers" while others welcome Amazon as one of a handful of approved vendors.  IMailToPrison.Com is the website for the bookstore Paperback Swap N Shop, and so approved for prisons in many states. 

Paperbacks are often required or preferred. Some prisons will accept hardbacks under some circumstances or for some inmates. Other prisons have no problems with hardcover books. Most prisons do not allow spiral wire or plastic binding or publications over a certain size. 

In many cases books must be new, other prisons are okay with used books. Some limit numbers of books, some prison systems have different rules based on an inmate's security status. 

Some prisons have rules on what type of packing box or envelope may be used.

Magazine subscriptions are mailed by the publishers and are accepted at every facility we have researched thus far. 

A very few prisons have very few rules, including allowing visitors to bring books into the unit. 

IMailToPrison.Com is collecting information on all states. 
If you are not sure what is okay for your loved one, use what we have learned. Information and/or links to all 50 states & Federal prisons can be found here.

If your loved one is in a county lock-up, please check the county sheriff's web page (Google it) for information on their regulations. Look for the jails or corrections section, and the information may be with the information on inmate mail or sometimes in visitation. Also call the sheriff's office and ask for the jail mail room.