Lifeline is a government assistance program that provides a monthly discount on home, broadband or cellular service.
Documentation from one of these services is required for enrollment: (1) Participation in one of the assistance programs listed below; OR (2) Household income at or below 135% of Federal Poverty guidelines for your household size.
1. US Federal Assistance Programs:
- SNAP (Food Stamps)
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Federal Public Housing Assistance
- Head Start Programs (only those meeting it’s income qualifying standards)
- Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance
- Veterans and Survivors Pension Benefits
- Senior Citizen Housing Development Fund
- Tribal-Administered Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
- Food Distribution Program in Indian Reservations (FDPIR)
2. Household income at or below 135% of Federal Poverty guidelines of your household size:
|2017 Federal Poverty Guidelines|
|For each additional person, add||$7,061|
Source: Federal Register, Vol. 82, No. 19, January 31, 2017 pp. 8831-8832
The Federal poverty guidelines are typically updated at the end of January.
The Expanded Federal Lifeline Program is a reduction in charges for residential service that can reduce your monthly charge of Landline or Cellular service to $0. This discount does not apply to additional features such as Custom Calling features, Class features, or restriction services, taxes and surcharges.
OTZ Broadband service requires customers to have a landline home phone in order to get broadband. The customer must pay full price for the landline. The Lifeline discount for broadband is $37.75 off of the $39.99 monthly fee. The customer must pay the difference between the normal broadband charge and the discount for broadband.
Only ONE lifeline discount is allowed per household. Members of a household are not permitted to receive Lifeline service from multiple telephone providers. For assistance in determining if there is more than one household at your residence, please complete this worksheet: Lifeline Household Worksheet .
The Expanded Linkup Program is a reduction in the initial connection charges to qualifying low-income customers. The program includes a 100% discount off the initial connection charges up to $100. The maximum discount is $100. This does not include charges for services or equipment that fall on the customer’s side of the grey protector box including customer premise equipment and inside wiring.
Lifeline Recertification 2017
New this year are federal regulations that require OTZ audit all Lifeline accounts on the anniversary of their enrollment. In order to comply with the audit, OTZ will be mailing current lifeline customers a letter and a form prior to their anniversary month. Lifeline subscribers must complete the Lifeline Recertification form and return it to us by the date noted in the letter in order to continue receiving the Lifeline benefit. Please note that a number of the qualifying programs have been removed. If a lifeline subscriber does not participate in one of the programs listed, they are no longer eligible for Lifeline assistance. Please remember that, under penalty of perjury, when requested, it is the Lifeline customer’s responsibility to provide verification of their eligibility and to keep OTZ informed of any changes in their status that might affect their qualification to receive Lifeline. Violation of the one-per-household requirement could result in de-enrollment from the program and potential prosecution by the U.S. government.