AT&T California is committed to increasing telephone service availability for all Californians. California LifeLine keeps low-income households connected by providing discounts on the telephone connection charges and the monthly basic residential telephone service charge.
California LifeLine Service
California LifeLine is a program sponsored by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) that provides discounts on connection/conversion and monthly basic residential telephone service charges to eligible low-income households. Additional discounts are available to qualifying customers who live on federally recognized Tribal Lands or have a deaf or hearing impaired member in the household.
Other benefits include the availability of free toll blocking and no charge for the monthly Federal Subscriber Line Charge. Further, the Federal Universal Service Fee, CPUC User Fee, state surcharges and fees, and certain taxes do not apply to California LifeLine service. However, any other AT&T California features such as Call Waiting will be charged at the regular rate.
Choose the plan that fits you best:
California LifeLine Plans
|Plans||Who May Benefit||Features||Price|
|California LifeLine – Flat Rate*||Qualifying low income customers who make 3 or MORE local calls a day||Provides unlimited local calling||
|California LifeLine – Measured Rate**||Qualifying low income customers who generally make LESS than 3 local calls a day||Provides 60 untimed local calls||
|Tribal Lands LifeLine***||Qualifying low income customers living on federally recognized tribal lands||Same as California LifeLine flat or measured plans above||
|California LifeLine Flat or Measured – Second Line||Qualifying low income customers with a household member using a TTY device||California LifeLine discount on a second line||
* The California LifeLine price includes federal and state discounts, and may include additional discounts, off the regular price of monthly service or one-time charge. Rates vary depending on exchange and are subject to change.
**Usage charges may apply.
***Available only to California residents who live on federally recognized tribal land (as defined in Title 47 – Code of Federal Regulations, Section 54.400 (e)).
California LifeLine Flat Rate Service
You pay the same each month no matter how much you call within your local area. For local toll calls (made outside of the local area but that are not far enough to be billed as long distance), charges are based upon Zone Usage Measurement (ZUM), or how far and what time of day you call. Long distance calls are not included in the California LifeLine Flat Rate Service charge.
California LifeLine Measured Rate Service
Measured Rate Service is for residential customers who don't make many local calls. Customers are charged for local calls in excess of the 60 monthly call allowance. It generally makes most sense for customers who make fewer than three local calls per day. Local toll calls made outside of the local area are charged based upon Zone Usage Measurement (ZUM) or how and what time of day you call. Long distance calls are not included in the California LifeLine Measured Rate Service charge.
How to Qualify for California LifeLine
To qualify for California LifeLine service, you need to meet each of the following three requirements:
- You or a member of your household participates in any of the Method 1 Program-Based chart listed below OR your total household income meets the requirements identified in the Method 2 Income-Based described below.
- The household in which you are applying for California LifeLine must be your primary residence and you do not currently receive the California LifeLine discounts.
- You are not claimed as a dependent on someone else's income tax return.
Method 1 Program Based: You qualify for California LifeLine if you or another person in your household is enrolled in any one of the following public assistance programs:
|Qualified Public Assistance Programs|
|Medicaid/Medi-Cal||Federal Public Housing Assistance or Section 8|
|Supplemental Security Income (SSI)||National School Lunch Program (NSLP)|
|CalFresh Program, formerly known as Food Stamps||Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) also known in California as:
California Work Opportunity & Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKS);
Stanislaus Work Opportunity & Responsibility to Kids (StanWORKS);
Welfare to Work (WTW) and
Greater Avenues for Independence (GAIN)
|Healthy Families Category A||Tribal TANF|
|Women, Infants and Children Program (WIC)||Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance|
|Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)||Head Start Income Eligible (Tribal Only)
Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations
Customers qualifying for California LifeLine through a qualifying program must provide a copy of supporting documentation of the member of the household who participates in the qualifying program.
Method 2 Income-Based: You qualify for California LifeLine if your total household income is at or less than the California LifeLine income maximums.
|California LifeLine Service Income Limits|
|Size of Household|| Annual Gross Income
Effective 6/1/12 to 5/31/13
|For each additional member after 5 members, add $6,000|
Household income is defined as all revenues received by everyone in your household, whether taxable or non-taxable, including, but not limited to: wages, salaries, interest, dividends, spousal support and child support, grants, gifts, allowances, stipends, public-assistance payments, social security and pensions, rental income, income from self-employment and cash payments from other sources, and all employment-related, non-cash income.
* Income levels are adjusted each year for inflation. Customers qualifying through income are required to provide documentation that proves the household income is at or below the income maximum levels listed above.
Acceptable income documents are:
- Prior Year's state, federal, or tribal tax return; or
- Any of the following income documents that show your total household income:
- Income statements or paycheck stubs for three consecutive months within the calendar year
- Statement of Benefits from Social Security, Veterans Administration, retirement/pension, unemployment compensation, and/or workmen's compensation
- A divorce decree
- Child support document and
- Other Official documents
How to Apply for California Lifeline
New AT&T California Customers
If you are a new applicant, you must be approved for California LifeLine before discounted rates are received. Until you are approved, you will pay regular rates for basic phone service and connection charge. Interest-free payment plans are available for any applicable service- connection charges.
Existing AT&T California Customers
If you are an existing AT&T customer and would like to change your service to California LifeLine, you will be billed a one-time conversion charge of $10.00 when approved for California LifeLine. Please call us at 1.800.288.2020 to modify.
There is no charge to change from California LifeLine to basic residential Flat or Measured Rate service.
If you are approved for California LifeLine by the California LifeLine Administrator, you will receive a bill credit with the California LifeLine discount retroactive to the date your service began or the date you requested to be enrolled, whichever is later. If your bill has a credit balance of $10.00 or more, you may request a refund check.
Maintaining LifeLine Service
California LifeLine eligibility is valid for one year. To remain on California LifeLine, you will be required to undergo the annual renewal process. A renewal form, sent by the California LifeLine Administrator, must be completed online or returned by mail by the due date on the form. If you have questions about your next renewal, call the California LifeLine Administrator toll free at 1.877.858.7463 or TTY 1.888.858.7889 from 7:00 am to 7:00 pm on regular business days. For more information, you may visit www.californialifeline.com
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) or the California LifeLine Administrator may require supporting documents to prove your eligibility at anytime. You will be removed from California LifeLine and will be changed to regular residential service if you are found ineligible.
Important Information about California LifeLine
California LifeLine is a government service. Willfully making false statements to obtain benefits can be punished by fine or imprisonment or you can be barred from the Lifeline program. California LifeLine service can't be transferred to another person and only one wireline or wireless discount per household is allowed.
Please call us toll-free at 1-800-288-2020 weekdays from anywhere in the United States to start the approval process.
Accessibility Resources Center: Customers who are hearing, speech, vision or mobility impaired can call 1-800-772-3140. For TTY access, dial 1-800-651-5111.
California LifeLine Brochures
The brochures linked below are in PDF format, which requires the Adobe Reader, available free of charge from the Adobe Website.