Conjugal visit

A conjugal visit is a scheduled extended visit during which an inmate of a prison is permitted to spend several hours or days in private, usually with a legal spouse. While the parties may engage in sexual intercourse, the generally recognized basis for permitting such a visit in modern times is to preserve family bonds and increase the chances of success for a prisoner's eventual return to life outside prison.

The visit will usually take place in a structure provided for that purpose, such as a trailer or small cabin. Supplies such as soap, condoms, tissues, sheets, pillows, and towels may be provided.

In the United States

In the United States, inmates must meet certain requirements to qualify for this privilege, for example, no violation of the rules in the last six months, history of good behavior, and so on. Those imprisoned in medium or maximum security facilities and inmates on death row are not permitted conjugal visits.

The visitor may be required to undergo a background check, and the inmate must also be free of any sexually transmitted diseases. As a matter of procedure, both visitor and inmate are searched before and after the visit, to ensure that the visitor has not attempted to smuggle any items in or out of the facility.

Over the last 40 years, most new prisons included special buildings specifically designed for "Sunday visits." Today, conjugal visitation programs, also known as the Extended Family Visit, survive in only six states: California, Connecticut, Mississippi, New Mexico, New York and Washington.

In June 2007, California's Department of Corrections announced it would allow same-sex conjugal visits. The policy was enacted to comply with a 2005 state law requiring state agencies to give the same rights to domestic partners that heterosexual couples receive. The new rules allow for visits only by registered domestic partners who are not themselves incarcerated. Further, the domestic partnership must have been established before one of the partners was incarcerated. Calif. gay inmates get conjugal visits - Life -

The Federal Bureau of Prisons does not allow conjugal visits.Calif. gay inmates get conjugal visits - Life - MSNBC.comBOP: Conjugal Visits - General Information Page

Around the world

In popular culture


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This article is based on "Conjugal visit" from the free encyclopedia Wikipedia ( It is licensed under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation Licencse. In the Wikipedia you can find a list of the authors by visiting the following address: