carriers offer a
"Lifeline" or "Link-Up" service at a significantly reduced cost if you
can qualify based on your income.
Lifeline support lowers the cost of basic, monthly local telephone
service and can be Free or just a few dollars per month. An eligible
customer may receive the Lifeline discount on either a wireline or
wireless connection, but the discount is available for only one account
per household. Lifeline discounts do not apply to taxes or surcharges,
and don't relieve the account holder from paying the monthly bill.
Details on how to sign up are below
to receive Lifeline discounts vary by state. The qualifying programs
are either determined by each state's Public Utility Commission or the
federal Lifeline/Link-Up program. Some states and U.S. territories do
not provide state-funded discounts, but in most cases, an individual is
eligible if he or she participates in one of the following programs:
Public Housing Assistance (FPHA) or Section 8
Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
School Lunch Program
Security Income (SSI)
Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
Age Pension (OAP)
to the Blind (AB)
to the Needy (AND)
of Tribal Territories*
your household income is at or below 135% of the Federal Poverty
Guidelines, you may qualify for Lifeline based on income.
You will need to provide current documentation that shows
your household income. Contact your chosen carrier for details.
receive Lifeline discounts in Tribal territories, you must reside on
land that meets the Bureau of Indian Affairs definition of a
reservation, specifically any federally recognized Native American
tribe's reservation within an eligible carrier's coverage area, based
on the zip code of your home address.
services are designed to be Free, but actual costs
range from Free to $20 per month. Don't confuse
Lifeline plans with "Senior" plans that are offered by some companies.
Lifeline is supported by government subsidies.
Sign Up For LifeLine Service:
If you qualify, you
can contact wired and wireless telephone companies
and ask about "Lifeline" service. You can shop among the programs to
see which one will give you the best offer. These programs are not
limited to your local telephone company, you can call your local
Or Take the Easy Way:
There are carriers that provide service specifically to
customers across the nation such as Q Link Wireless
or SafeLink Wireless
Not all carriers provide Lifeline service and not necessarily
in their entire coverage areas. Also, not
all states support
subsidized wireless service and not necessarily at the same subsidy
Some wireless carriers do not significantly discount LifeLine plans, so