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Cash & Expenses

New Discount on your phone or internet service

Lifeline | Federal Communications Commission (FCC) / Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC)

1. How it Works

Lifeline is a federal program that gives up to a $9.25 monthly discount on phone or internet service. You can only use Lifeline for either phone or internet, but not both.

  • To get the Lifeline discount, you can either:
    • Check if your current phone or internet company offers the Lifeline discount, or
    • Enroll in service with a phone or internet company that offers the Lifeline discount.
  • The discount can be applied to either phone or internet service, but not both.
  • Your household may also qualify for a temporary $50 monthly discount on your internet bill through the Emergency Broadband Benefit.
  • Your eligibility for Lifeline will be checked automatically every year.

2. Determine your eligibility

Only one Lifeline discount is available per household.

  • A household is one person or group of people who live together at the same address and share money. Check here for more information on what a household means.

Your household is eligible if its income is 135% or less than the federal poverty level:

Household size Income at 135% or less than the federal poverty level
1 $17,388
2 $23,517
3 $29,646
4 $35,775
5 $41,904
6 $48,033
7 $54,162
8 $60,291
For each additional person add $6,129

You are also eligible if you, a child, or dependent in your household participates in one of these programs:

  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
  • Medicaid
  • Federal Public Housing Assistance (FPHA)
  • Veterans Pension and Survivors Benefit

If you are eligible for Lifeline, you are also eligible for the Emergency Broadband Benefit.

Take a short survey to see if you might be eligible for this or 30 other programs.

Am I Eligible?

3. What you need to include

You will need a social security number (SSN) to apply.

You will also need to give proof of income or proof of program participation.

Proof of program participation

Prove that you or someone in your household participates in:

  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
  • Medicaid
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
  • Federal Public Housing Assistance (FPHA)
  • Veterans and Survivors Pension Benefit

Submit one document that includes all of the following:

  • Your name, your child’s name, or the name of a dependent who participates in a qualifying program
  • The name of the Lifeline-qualifying program, such as SNAP;
  • The government or tribal program administrator or the managed care organization (MCO) that issued the document; and
  • An issue date within the last 12 months or a future expiration date that aligns with the benefit period

Proof of household income

Next section:

4. How to Apply

4. How to apply

Here are your options.

Apply online

  1. Complete the online application on the National Verifier.
  2. Once you are approved for Lifeline, enroll in the Lifeline program with a participating phone or internet company. Visit a company in-store, or contact one online or by phone.

Apply online

Apply by mail

Apply by phone

Come back to it later.
We can send you a link to this page to help you get back to it when you’re ready.

More ways to get help with this program

Visit the Lifeline website

Email Lifeline

Email for questions about your application or to have an application mailed to you.

Call Lifeline

Call 800-234-9473 for questions about your application or to have an application mailed to you.

Last Updated Friday, January 7th, 3:22pm

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