For Tele-Media customers, Lifeline provides a monthly benefit of $9.25 toward qualifying services.  The Lifeline program of the federal universal service low-income program provides a benefit of $9.25 toward qualifying services.

Are you eligible? 

To participate in the Lifeline program, a consumer must either have an income that is at or below 135% of the federal poverty guidelines (see chart below) or participate in one of the following assistance programs:

  • Federal Public Housing Assistance (Section 8)
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Food Stamps or SNAP)
  • Medicaid
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
  • Veteran’s Pension and Survivors Benefit

If you reside on tribal lands and participate in any of the federal or state assisted programs listed below:

  • Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance
  • Tribally – Administered Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TTANF)
  • Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR)
  • Tribal Head Start (if income eligibility criteria are met)

A consumer may be eligible if his or her household income is at or below 135% of the federal poverty guidelines as indicated in the chart above.  These amounts may change and you are required to provide proof of all sources of income.  The person applying for eligibility must be the same person listed on the telephone bill.

Federal Rules prohibit eligible low-income consumers from receiving more than one Lifeline benefit per household.  An eligible consumer may receive one benefit on either phone service (home or wireless) or internet (home or mobile), but not both.

Household Eligibility

A household is defined, for the purposes of the Lifeline program, as any individual or group of individuals who live 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 the household.  A household may include related and unrelated persons.  A household is not permitted to receive Lifeline benefits from multiple providers. Violation of the one-per-household limitation constitutes a violation of the FCC’s rules and will result in de-enrollment from the program.  Lifeline is a non-transferable benefit and you may not transfer your benefit to any other person.

A consumer whose household currently is receiving more than one Lifeline benefit must select a single Lifeline provider and contact the other provider to de-enroll from their program. Consumers violating this rule may also be subject to criminal and/or civil penalties.

Household Size 48 Contiguous States, DC, and Territories Alaska Hawaii
1 $16,862 $21,060 $19,413
2 $22,829 $28,796 $26,271
3 $28,796 $35,991 $33,129
4 $34,763 $43,457 $39,987
5 $40,730 $50,922 $46,845
6 $46,697 $58,388 $53,703
7 $52,664 $65,853 $60,561
8 $58,631 $73,319 $67,419
For each additional person, add $5,967 $7,466 $6,858

Are there any restrictions?

The Lifeline program is available for one service per “economic unit” so that separate low-income families living at the same address can get connected.  You must establish service prior to applying for the Lifeline benefit.  The name on the billing statement must match the name of the household member participating in the eligible program.

Being a Lifeline customer does not protect you from being disconnected if you fail to pay your telephone bill.

The Lifeline benefit cannot be applied to an outstanding balance owed to Tele-Media Solutions.

How to apply

Simply call toll-free 1-866-290-1731 to verify eligibility and to request an application.  Tele-Media Solutions also provides applications to customers upon request.

You must provide proof of program participation. This could include a copy of your benefit ID card, a copy of an eligibility letter from an authorized agency or prior year’s statement of benefits.  Do not send original documents.

Lifeline Application
Lifeline Brochure
Lifeline Eligibility Household Worksheet

Mail the application, telephone bill and documents to:

Lifeline Administrator
30 Lanidex Plaza West
PO Box 685
Parsippany, NJ 07054-0685