Phone Information

Inmate Access to Telephones

Inmates use telephones that are located throughout the jail housing units to place outgoing calls. Each housing unit has specific rules concerning the locations of telephones, hours of use, and the length of calls allowed. The basic rules are:

  • Inmates are not allowed to make non-typical collect calls, 3-way calls, or unwanted calls.
  • Inmates cannot receive telephone calls.
  • Inmates have access to telephones during the day time, except during meals.
  • Inmates may place normal collect calls (subject to fees by your phone service provider) or they may use the Network Communications International Corporation (NCIC) prepaid phone account service.
  • Jail staff will not relay messages.
  • Phone calls, except for those made to the inmate’s attorney, are recorded.
  • Text Telephone (TTY) services for the hearing impaired are available upon request.

Prepaid Phone Accounts

The Shelby County Jail uses an outside telephone service provider called NCIC Inmate Phone Service. NCIC offers prepaid phone accounts and lower per minute costs than regular collect calls. An account can be set up for a specific phone number or a specific inmate. Inmate prepaid accounts allow an inmate to place collect calls to any unblocked phone number. Phone number prepaid accounts allow inmates to call one phone number, as long as that number is not blocked.

NCIC Calling Rates

Call Type
Prepaid CollectDebit/Debit Cards
Connection Fee

Per Minute RatePer Minute Rate
Intralata / Interstate$0.25$0.21$0.00
Interlata / Intrastate$0.25$0.21$0.00
Interlata / Interstate$0.25$0.21$0.00
Inmate Voicemail$1.50 (Three Minute Duration)$1.50 (Three Minute Duration)N/A

Prepaid Accounts

Citizens may purchase prepaid phone services using kiosks located in the public areas at the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, or by calling 800-943-2189 or 800-382-2887, through NCIC Customer Service. 

Inmates can purchase prepaid phone time using funds in their inmate account, through the jail commissary. Activation instructions are printed on the back of the card.

Rejecting or Blocking Calls from Inmates

If you receive a call from an inmate, you will be given the option of accepting the call, hanging up, blocking all calls from the inmate, or blocking all calls from any inmates in the Shelby County Jail. Simply follow the phone prompts during the call.

Please remember that the Shelby County Jail does not administer the NCIC phone system. If you have questions about the service, prepaid phone cards, or issues concerning phone number blocking, you must contact NCIC Customer Service at 800-382-2887 or 800-943-2189.