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General Information – Lifeline

Low-income phone service

Lifeline Program Restrictions

Only one Lifeline service is available per household.

  • A household is defined, for purposes of the Lifeline program, as any individual or group of individuals who live together at the same address and share income and expenses.
  • A household is not permitted to receive Lifeline benefits from multiple providers (i.e., if you receive a Lifeline discount on your wireless service, you would not also qualify to receive that discount on your home phone service).

Violation of the one-per-household limitation constitutes a violation of the Federal Communications Commission's (or "FCC") rules and will result in the subscriber's de-enrollment from the program.

Lifeline is a non-transferable benefit and the subscriber may not transfer his or her benefit to any other person.

Lifeline is a federal benefit and willfully making false statements to obtain the benefit can result in fines, imprisonment, de-enrollment or being barred from the program.

For information for Wireless Lifeline offers for your state, please click here.

General Lifeline Information - For Home Phone

Making home phone service even more affordable.

Because phone service is so important in today's world, AT&T believes everyone should have access to it. We offer two discounted telephone service plans to make basic home phone service even more affordable for qualified customers.

  • Regular Lifeline - provides qualified customers with discounted home phone service and the ability to add additional services and features.
  • Enhanced Lifeline - offers a deeper discount to qualified customers who live on federally-recognized Tribal lands.*

* Tribal lands as defined in Title 47 – Code of Federal Regulations, Section 54.400(e).

FAQ's about the new Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Lifeline Rules for your Home Phone

Q. What do I need to fill in on the application?
A. It is important that you fill out the application completely and accurately to ensure there are no delays in being approved for the Lifeline program. Please review the instructions on the application carefully.
    Required:
  • Customer Name
  • Customer Service Address
  • City, State, Zip
  • Must note if your address is permanent or temporary
  • Customer Telephone Number
  • Social Security Number (last 4 digits only) or Tribal ID
  • Date of Birth (mm/dd/yyyy)
  • Must check qualifying program or income; if income, must provide # of persons in household
  • Must provide proof of program participation or income level
  • Must check (or initial) every box in the list of certifications
  • Signature
  • Date
Q. What proof do I need to send?
A. If you qualify by program assistance, please enclose a photocopy of your benefits card or award letter. If you qualify by income, please enclose photocopies of any of the following qualifying documents — DO NOT send any originals.
  • Most recent state or federal tax return
  • Retirement/pension statement of benefits
  • Current income statement from an employer
  • Unemployment/Workmen's Compensation Statement of Benefits
  • Paycheck stubs for most recent 3 months
  • Federal notice letter of participation in General Assistance
  • Social Security Statement of Benefits
  • Veterans Administration Statement of Benefits
  • Child Support document
  • Divorce decree
  • Other official document containing income information
Q. How do I get proof of Social Security (Social Security Statement of Benefits) if qualifying by income?
A. Social Security Statement of Benefits is mailed to all recipients annually. If you need a copy, please contact your local Social Security office.
Q. Can I send a copy of my paycheck as proof?
A. We will need a copy of your paycheck stubs for three consecutive months, as proof. A copy of your paycheck is not accepted.
Q. Is Supplemental Social Security (SSI) the same as Social Security?
A. No. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a Federal income supplement program funded by general tax revenues (not Social Security taxes). It is designed to help aged, blind and disabled people who have little or no income.
Q. I'm a senior citizen, do I qualify?
A. Lifeline is not based on age. You must participate in one of the qualifying programs or meet the income guidelines to be eligible for Lifeline.
Q. I receive Medicare, do I qualify?
A. No. Medicare is not a qualifier for the Lifeline program.
Q. I babysit or am self-employed, what is acceptable for proof?
A. Please provide a photocopy of your most recent tax return.
Q. Do I have to wait until I'm approved for Lifeline to get phone service?
A. No. You must have working phone service to be approved for Lifeline.
Q. Will the Lifeline discount be on my next bill?
A. Lifeline will be applied to your account within 2 bill cycles and is retroactive back to your approval date.
Q. Why isn't Lifeline showing on my bill anymore?
A. You may have failed to complete a Recertification within the required 30 days. A service interruption may also trigger removal of your Lifeline discount. You must re-apply by using the Application for Lifeline to have the discount added back to your account.
Q. Why has my bill amount changed?
A. The FCC has changed the federal Lifeline discount amount.
Q. Why has my bill amount changed?
A. The FCC has changed the federal Lifeline discount amount.
Q. Why did the FCC change its contribution to the Lifeline discount?
A. The FCC reformed many aspects of its Lifeline program and changing the old Lifeline discount rate structure to a simple, flat rate discount was one of those reforms. The FCC concluded that such a discount is easier for customers to understand.
Q. How can I find out more about these changes?
A. Visit www.usac.org
Q. Why did I receive a recertification form in the mail?
A. The FCC is requiring all customers who have Lifeline as of June 1, 2012, to certify that they are still eligible for Lifeline according to the new guidelines. Please visit att.com/verifylifeline for more information.
Continue to Lifeline for Wireless
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