Lifeline is a federal benefit that lowers the monthly cost of phone, internet, or bundled phone/internet service. Eligible customers will save $9.25 on their basic monthly bill. The benefits also cover the Access Recovery Charge (ARC). Customers who reside on tribal lands may be eligible for additional discounts up to $25.
How do I know if I am eligible?
Qualifying low-income customers can establish eligibility for Lifeline if the customer, one or more of their dependents or a member of their household participates in a qualifying assistance program or through meeting income-based requirements.
A “Household” is defined as any individual or group of individuals who are living together at the same address as one economic unit. An “economic unit” consists of all adult individuals contributing to and sharing in the income and expenses of a household.
If you, one of your dependents, or a member of your household participates in any of the following programs, you may qualify for Lifeline assistance:
*Federal Public Housing Assistance (FPHA)
*Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
*Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
*Veterans Pension or Survivors Benefit Programs
*If your total household income is at or below 135% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines, you may also qualify for Lifeline assistance.
Tribal Specific Programs:
*Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) General Assistance
*Tribal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (Tribal TANF)
*Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR)
*Tribal Head Start (only households that meet the income qualifying standard)
What proof of eligibility do I need to provide?
You will be asked to sign a form stating, under penalty of perjury, that you receive benefits from at least one of the qualifying programs listed above and will be required to provide documentation which verifies your participation in the program.
Proof of total household income may be required for income-based qualification. The following documents are acceptable as proof of income:
*The prior year’s state, federal, or Tribal tax return;
*Current income statement from an employer or paycheck stub;
*Social Security statement of benefits;
*Veterans Administration statement of benefits;
*Retirement or pension statement of benefits;
*Unemployment or Workers’ Compensation statement of benefits;
*Federal or Tribal notice letter participation in General Assistance; and
*Divorce decree, child support award, or other official document containing income
If the documentation does not cover a full year, such as a current pay stub, the subscriber must present the same type of documentation covering three consecutive months within the previous 12 months.
135% of Federal poverty guidelines (As of January 2018)
1 person: $16,389
2 people: $22,221
3 people: $28,053
4 people: $33,885
6 people: $45,549
7 people: $51,381
8 people: $57,213
*For each additional person, add $5,832
In addition, you must not currently be receiving Lifeline assistance, and no other person in your household can be subscribed to the lifeline program.
More Information about Lifeline:
Your Lifeline benefits will take effect when proof of eligibility is received.
Your household cannot get Lifeline from more than one phone or internet company.
Eligibility is reviewed periodically. Your benefits will be discontinued when you no longer meet the eligibility requirements or when proof of eligibility is not received. Customers who are no longer eligible for Lifeline benefits must notify their service provider.
Being a lifeline customer does not protect you from being disconnected for failure to pay your bill.
Lifeline can only be applied to one account per independent houshold.
Lifeline is non-transferable. You cannot give your Lifeline benefit to another person, even if they qualify.
You must give accurate and true information on all Lifeline-related forms or questionnaires. If you give false or fraudulent information, you will lose your Lifeline benefit (i.e., de-enrollment or being barred from the program) and the United States government can take legal actions against you. This may include (but is not limited to) fines or imprisonment.
For more information visit:lifelinesupport.org