A manila envelope is an envelope designed for transporting documents.
Harold Finch and Root have used these envelopes to provide people with a new identity. Usually the envelope contains money, a passport issued under a new name, car keys, and other items or documents to help people start a new life.
On some occasions, other items are stored in buff colored envelopes as well.
- In “Reasonable Doubt”, Vanessa Watkins finds several thousand dollars in one of those envelopes. The money was used to frame her for the supposed death of her husband, Jeremy Watkins.
- In “Mors Praematura”, Root uses a manila envelope to stash a gun under a park bench which she would later use against Vigilance.
- In “Wingman”, Root gives an envelope with $50,000 to a group of arms dealers for an AT4 anti-tank shoulder launched munitions system.
- In “Pretenders”, Finch hands cash in a manila envelope to a Hong Kong delivery man he paid to steal Elizabeth Bridges' laptop in order to install a piece of software on it.
- In “Guilty”, Emma Blake received an envelope full of newspaper clippings about the trial for which she and Finch were summoned for jury duty.
- In “Sotto Voce”, Terry Easton received an envelope which contained a cellphone and further instructions.
- In the commentary for “Deus Ex Machina”, Michael Emerson mentioned manila envelopes and wondered "how many times Finch and Reese have given people a manila envelope with a new identity and enough cash to get by".