Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How can I find out what facility my loved one is in?
Current facility assignments for most offenders incarcerated in the Colorado Department of Corrections may be found through our online inmate locator, accessible at  Alternatively, you may call our telephone Inmate Locator at 719-226-4880. If an individual is being transported, their updated facility assignment will generally reflect on the online inmate locator within 24 hours of the move being completed.
How can I write to an offender?
Mail may be sent to each offender at the facility at which they are incarcerated.  Envelopes must be properly addressed and include the offender’s full name, DOC#, the address, and a valid return address. Envelopes should be addressed as follows:
Offender Name and DOC#
Facility Name
Facility Address
City, State ZIP
Additional information regarding mail and what may be sent through the mail may be found under our “Policies related to offender mail” section of our Policies webpage, available at
How can I visit an offender?
Information on visitation, including the visiting application and instructions for applying may be found on our website at  
I have been denied visitation. How can I appeal?
If you have been denied visitation, please submit a written appeal, including all information you wish to have considered, to the Administrative Head or Warden of the facility in question. Please submit a letter which includes all of the information you wish to be reviewed and considered regarding your visitation denial. The warden or administrative head has the final decision making authority for the Colorado Department of Corrections regarding denial or approval of visitation.
Am I allowed to send my loved one a care package or food items from home?
Due to safety and security concerns, food items may not be sent in except through the inmate care package program, which is available through Union Supply Direct at certain times throughout the year. Information regarding this program may be found on their website at You may also order through that website during the available order dates. Otherwise, you may deposit funds to an inmate’s account so they may purchase their own supplemental food items through our Canteen program.  Information regarding how to deposit funds to an inmate account may be found on our website at  Information regarding items available through Canteen may be found on our website at
I need to serve an offender with legal paperwork, will CDOC personally serve the offender for me?
Colorado Department of Corrections will not serve any individual incarcerated with us. If service may be accomplished via mail, you may serve the individual by mail. If personal service is required, please contact the sheriff’s office for the county in which the correctional facility is located; the sheriff’s office usually can be hired to complete the service.
How can I request that an offender be moved to a specific facility?
Due to the complex nature of facility assignment and the large number of factors that must be considered for each facility assignment, the CDOC is unfortunately unable to accommodate requests for assignment to a specific facility or geographic region within the state. At this time, the department also does not allow for hardship transfers due to a loved one’s medical condition. If an offender or family member has a desire to have an offender moved to a specific facility, they are encouraged to discuss that interest with the case manager.
Where can I find copies of your policies?
Copies of our policies may be found on our website at
Where can I find the address or phone number to one of your prisons?
Contact information for each of our correctional facilities and parole offices may be found on our website at
My loved one was just transferred to CDOC from county jail, what happens when they come to CDOC? When will I be able to visit or speak with him or her?
Upon intake, male offenders are processed through Denver Reception and Diagnostic Center while female offenders are processed through Denver Women’s Correctional Facility. During the intake process, full screenings are completed and an individual’s needs are assessed. Each offender’s custody level and long-term facility assignment will be determined, and the offender will submit CIPS (Colorado Inmate Phone System) lists which must be approved before they are able to make calls. Once the CIPS list is approved, the individual will be able to call any number on the approved list. Information regarding contacting your loved one may be found on our website at  You may submit a request for visitation to DRDC or DWCF once the offender arrives at the facility, however, the average length of stay at DRDC is only 28 days before the individual is transferred to his permanent facility assignment. Visiting information may be found on our website at  Incoming offenders will also be given an opportunity to purchase Canteen items, to including hygiene items. Thus, you may also wish to deposit funds to your loved one’s inmate account.  Information on how to deposit funds to an inmate account may be found on our website at
I want to send my loved one a book.  What are the guidelines for that?
Books may be sent directly to the offender at his assigned facility from an approved source of supply, which is defined in policy as a retailer, wholesaler, or publisher whose address and phone number are verifiable in a commercial directory. Mailing addresses for each of our correctional facilities may be found on our website at under the facility tab. 

Please be particularly aware of the following when sending books: 

  • Items of value ordered through the mail will not be delivered to an offender until a receipt establishing proof of purchase and payment in full is received by DOC mail room employees (receipt can be enclosed in the package or submitted separately to the mail room). If a receipt reflecting payment in full is not enclosed, the mail room holds the items for 10 days before returning the merchandise to the vendor. 
  • Any book sent to an offender must be new, used books will not be accepted. 
  • Please be aware that although is considered an approved source of supply, Amazon marketplace retailers are not due to the lack of verifiable information in a commercial directory for those retailers. 
  • All books sent must be in compliance with Administrative Regulation 300-26 Publications.
I have a question or concern that has not been addressed here, how can I find the answer?
If you have a question or concern that you have been unable to locate the answer to, please contact our Constituent Services Office and they will be happy to assist you; their contact information may be found on our website at