Lifeline Discount Phone Services
The Lifeline Discount Phone Services program is designed to increase the availability of telecommunications services to low income subscribers by providing a discount of up to $9.25 per month off the cost of wireline or wireless telephone service. Enhanced benefits are available to low-income subscribers who live on federally recognized Indian Tribal lands, with monthly discounts of up to $34.25.
Lifeline is supported by the federally-mandated Universal Service Fund. Federal rules prohibit eligible consumers from receiving more than one Lifeline discount per household, and the discount is available for either a wireline or a wireless service, but not both.
To be eligible to receive the Lifeline discount phone services, a consumer must be a current recipient of any one of the following low income assistance programs:
- Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF)
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
- Federal Public Housing Assistance/Section 8
- National School Lunch Program’s free lunch program
- Head Start Program (if eligibility criteria are met)
- Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance
- Tribal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TTANF)
- Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR)
Consumers whose total gross annual income does not exceed one hundred and thirty-five percent (135%) of the Federal Poverty Guidelines are also eligible for Lifeline.
How to Apply
- If you are eligible, contact a telephone company that serves your area and ask them to mail you a Lifeline Discount Phone Services application form.
- Complete the form and mail it to the telephone company. Your discount begins when the telephone company gets the approved form.
Note: Proof of eligibility is required, and subscribers must recertify their eligibility each year.
We Can Help
If you have a consumer complaint, contact us for help or call toll free within North Carolina at 1-877-5-NO-SCAM.