Telephone assistance programs in Massachusetts, including Lifeline, can help low income families by giving them a monthly discount on their phone bill. There are several requirements to enroll in the program, and the goal is to make sure that all families have some form of communication. The state and FCC both support providing discounts to households that earn a low income.
The program can only cover one phone per home, regardless of whether it is a landline or wireless unit. In some cases, a family may be able to get a free phone from a company like Safelink Wireless. Lifeline is a government program that provides a monthly discount on telephone service for low-income households, as well as free or discounted landline or cell phones. It has been very effective in keeping phones activated for senior citizens, individuals facing a hardship or that have had a reduction in income, as well as the disabled, among others.
Lifeline is for households with at least one member enrolled in a federal government or state of Massachusetts program, not just for those with a very low income. The applicant’s credit score will not be a factor in signing up for communication service.
To qualify for Lifeline, the applicant must meet all the requirements of the program. This means that income is included in the calculation. The government has set income limits that customers cannot exceed. The dollar amount that determines whether someone qualifies for food stamps will usually be around 150% of the poverty level, and this will also take into account the number of children or adults living in the home. The more people there are, the higher the income can be.
In order to qualify for a vaccine in Massachusetts, someone must either be over the age of 75, work in a health care setting, or receive some form of public benefits. If someone is getting help from the government, they will be able to get a cheaper phone bill. Some common programs that can help qualify a person for free or reduced-cost lunch include TANF, MassHealth/Medicaid, SNAP food stamps, or LIHEAP. Many families also have a child in the National School Lunch Program.
Only discounts for standard phone service, not for long distance or special features such as call waiting. The cell phone carrier will not pay for features that are not related to cell phone service. The amount you save each month by switching to a new service provider can vary, but it may be anywhere from $10 to $20 per month. Additionally, some service providers may offer assistance with connecting to their service and paying any associated fees. There are no contracts, activation or monthly fees for those who are eligible in Massachusetts.
How to apply for phone bill help in Massachusetts
If someone needs more information about an application or thinks they are qualified, they should call the phone company. The staff at Verizon, AT&T, and other providers are well trained on the Lifeline terms and can answer any questions you may have. It is a good idea to have income verification, such as a pay stub or bank statement, as well as information about any benefits you are receiving, before you contact a company. The company will ask for this information from you.
Customers in Massachusetts can get a free cell phone. There are two providers that can offer free government cell phones, they are TracFone from SafeLink Wireless and also Virgin Mobile with their Assurance Wireless service. If you want to choose one of those options, you will need to contact the companies yourself.