If you're expecting an inheritance and have ever done prison time then you will

prison - a photo of alcatrez prison cell
United States
May 10, 2007 6:12pm CST
want to read this discussion. My Uncle spent a year in prison and now he is expecting an inheritance from my grandfather. A good amount of money. Yesterday he received a letter in the mail stating that the inheritance has a lean of $38,000.oo for his "stay" there. I can't believe this. I have never heard of this happening before. The amount they are taking is almost half of what he is expecting to get in his inheritance. I don't understand this. He did his time and learned his lesson and has not been in trouble since. Can anyone shed some light here?
8 people like this
11 responses
• United States
11 May 07
I've never heard of this but think it is an excellent idea. Why should someone who has committed a crime get rewarded with free room and board and medical care while some many law abiding citizens do without? Why should a man who works full time, or even two jobs, struggling to support his family have to pay taxes to support criminals? This reminds me of that Sheriff in Arizona who makes the inmates work for their keep, what an uproar that caused.
7 people like this
• United States
11 May 07
I am sorry I disagree with you. If a person commits a crime and ends up in prison THAT is NOT a reward! It is a punishment. He has already paid for his crime surely it doesn't cost him $38,000.oo to live in the free world. Some kind of re-payment yes but 38 grand is a bit steep. Thanks for responding!
2 people like this
• United States
11 May 07
SJOHNSON I think it horrible and totally wrong. The guy did something wrong and ended up in prison...it is the responsiblity of the government to house inmates...it's on the tax payers, but it is continuing punishment to do what they are doing. Once the guy is out of prison...it should end there, but because of these horrible people who are so concerned about their taxes the EXconvict is sentenced again. Incidently, I hate the way ARIZONA treats convicts. It;s cruel and unusual punichment and it's against our CONSTITUTION.
@Alloy42 (373)
• United States
11 May 07
Sorry to disagree with Ms. Johnson, but $38,000 is a reasonable price for an amount of time over 3 months in prison. Depending on the cost of real estate, utilities, the cost of staffing the prison, transport, food, etc. The cost of housing prisons is actually quite a bit. Whether prisoners should pay for it or the tax payers, depends on how the state's system is set up and whether the cost of the prison is taken into consideration by a jury when deciding. Regardlss at this point it is a bit late to appeal it. His best bet would be A) to get the law allowing taxation/fining of inheritances changed through court appeal or passing law including retroactive payments or B) to get a lawyer to actually fight the individual case.
@sanell (2114)
• United States
11 May 07
money machine - money, inheritance, making money
It depends on what the crime was done if there was a suit filed for destitution then perhaps the attorney or the suit put a lean on any potential earnings he may get to pay for that suit. It sucks but it happens. I hope that he still ends up getting some funds out of the inheritance and that it is NOT all for not.
• United States
11 May 07
There was no victim nor lawsuit it was motor vehicle charges. He will still get some funds but I just thought this is a little steep to pay for one year of living expenses while being in prison. I can live very comfortably on 38 grand a year and that would be with me being able to go out and go shopping every week for new clothes (something you can't do in prison.) Thanks for responding!
3 people like this
• United States
12 May 07
When you talk about living well on 38,000.00 a year, and prisoners getting three meals and a slab to sleep on, don't forget to add in the other costs associated with their stay -- the police force who had to investigate the crime, the attorneys who put together the case and presented it, the judge who presided over the case, the jury that decided the case, (and possibly attorneys and another judge if the case was appealed,) the prison guards who enforced the sentence and the support staff at the prison, (secretaries, payroll clerks, human resource etc.) All of these people have their jobs only because people like your uncle committed a crime. People like your uncle incurred these costs, why shouldn't they have to pay?
1 person likes this
• United States
12 May 07
Yes I think I am beginning to see some light here. There actually are a lot of costs accumulated by one committed a crime. Thanks!
@jennybianca (12918)
• Australia
11 May 07
I am not familiar with the laws in your country, but I believe in our country, there are laws to stop prisoners benefiting or earning. I know it partly refers to earnings gained from their crime, or earnings from their rime in prison. However, we have the victims of crime compensation. They take money from prisoners to pay the victims. This is not only retrospective, but futre earnings too. So I don't know your Uncles crime, or if their was a victim, but your goverment could have a similar law.
• United States
11 May 07
There was no victim. Thanks for responding!
2 people like this
@byfaithonly (10716)
• United States
11 May 07
I'm sorry, I probably shouldn't even respond to this but I guess I look at it from a different point of view. I don't know how it is in your area but in mine those prisoners live pretty good compared to some who have not broken the law. At the same time, I've been a single mother for 16 years now and there have been a lot of things we've done without but all that time I didn't get a penny from the state but sure did have taxes taken out of my paychecks to support those in jail, prison, or setting at home living off welfare. At the same time in your uncle's defence - we all know the government will get money anyway they can guess this is just another way.
4 people like this
• United States
11 May 07
I think you should not hesitate to respond to any discussions after all that is what this forum is made up of many different opinions and views. I don't think being is prison is a good living. I think it is a learning experience. I hear you about going without I have gone without many things in my life. I have gone hungry for days. I understand what you are saying about the taxes. Our taxes do not mainly support those in jail. Our taxes support a lot of things like paying our President for one. Many things in jail you have to buy and need your own money sent in. They give you three meals a day and a mattress on a metal or concrete slab and a uniform. You get medical attention only if you request it or its an emergency. A lot of people learn there lesson from doing prison time (the first time.) Well anyway thanks for responding and listening to my views. + ('',)
1 person likes this
@urbandekay (18314)
12 May 07
Excellent! I don't want to pay for criminals to be punished, so I am glad money is recouped from them. all the best urban
2 people like this
@4cuteboys (4103)
• United States
11 May 07
Hm, I haven't heard of that, but depending on the length of the stay it's actually a good idea. It costs a ton of money to house convicts in prison, and it would help ofset the cost. Nothing in life is free! That being said, I would feel for the people that were wrongfully imprisoned, and had their money taken away. That would be very unfair, and we know that every year a ton of people are imprisioned and later released when it was found out with DNA or whatever that they were actually innocent like they claimed.
2 people like this
@Destiny007 (5820)
• United States
11 May 07
This is a way to help defray the state for the costs of keeping people in prison. It is not that uncommon for people in jail to have to pay for their room and board. Actually, I believe this to be a very good idea, and may serve as another deterrent to crime.
2 people like this
@yesdear (23)
• United States
13 May 07
i can't shed light on this but i can't believe it either. by the way how's he doing? i've never heard of this before but then none of my friend's were ever in this situation either. who sent the letter? how'd they find out he did time?
1 person likes this
• United States
13 May 07
The state sent the letter they knew he did time by his SS # so they automatically put a lien on it. And yes they have 45 days to file the lean and they can go back 20 years on any old bills including prison stay!
@dbeast (1500)
• India
11 May 07
man this is crazy.when a person is out of prison he has done his time for whatever crme he has commited.i think he is being punished again by asking him to be pay thirty eight grand.there should certainly be some objection raised regarding this.
1 person likes this
@prestocaro (1254)
• United States
11 May 07
This sounds insane to me! I didn't know they charged you for prison. Something seems really wrong with that. I mean, they can sentence you to pay a fine, or they can send you to jail, but I didn't know they could fine you for going to jail. Your uncle should look into getting a lawyer. I think that is really unfair. I mean, he did his time and it isn't as though prison is some kind of hotel.
@jbb316 (1779)
• United States
11 May 07
This is outrageous. I have never heard of this before. Since he did his time. I thought his debt to society was paid. I guess the government really can do whatever they want.
1 person likes this