Lifeline Consumer Alert

Important Changes to Lifeline Coming

Effective 12/2/2016


The FCC is implementing a variety of changes to the federal Lifeline program that will take effect on December 2, 2016.  These changes will likely impact you in some fashion if you subscribe to a Lifeline supported service.  Please read the following highlights closely and the more detailed “Upcoming Changes” that follows for more specific information about the potential changes to your Lifeline service.


Important Highlights of Lifeline Changes Effective December 2, 2016:

  • Be aware that when enrolling in a Lifeline service, you will be unable to transfer your Lifeline benefit to another carrier for a period of 12 months (if data service is provided). The Lifeline benefit for voice service cannot be transferred for 60 days. 

  • Be aware that some of the Lifeline eligibility programs have been retired and you may be required to re-certify your eligibility under a different, active, program at some point in the future.

  • Broadband Internet Access Service (“BIAS”) will now be supported by the Lifeline universal service fund along with voice service.

  • The addition of BIAS as a supported service means that providers will be offering a wide range of data and voice services as well as combinations of those.  Consumers must be diligent in comparing the range of service options to ensure that the service they select will best meet their individual needs and provide the best value for the Lifeline benefit for which the consumer is eligible.

Click Here for Upcoming Changes to the Lifeline Program