If an inmate has no money in his commissary account, he cannot purchase items from the commissary until someone deposits money into the account, as the Florida Department of Corrections explains. The inmate still receives basic necessities from the prison.
Supplies provided to inmates without funds in their commissary account vary by institution. For example, some facilities provide all inmates with basic food, toiletries, hygiene items, haircuts, shoes and clothing, according to the Florida Department of Corrections. However, without money in their account, inmates cannot purchase additional items, such as snack food and soda.
Other facilities require inmates to request indigent kits that include hygiene items if they do not have money to purchase the necessities, according to the County of Summit, Ohio. Inmates may have to wait a period of 10 days before requesting clothing items such as underwear or socks.
Inmates who receive checks from the Department of Veteran's Affairs, pension funds or tax refunds can have that money deposited into their commissary account, according to the Florida Department of Corrections. In addition, an inmate's friends or family may also give the inmate money. Deposit methods vary by facility, but they may include the option to send money online, by phone, through MoneyGram or by sending a money order.