Lifeline Program

​​​​< Assistance Programs

The Lifeline program provides low-income Wisconsin residents affordable access to essential telecommunications services by discounting the cost of phone, cell and internet services. 

How To Get Lifeline

You need to talk to a Lifeline provider.  Many, but not all, cellular and traditional telecommunications providers offer Lifeline. Many internet service providers (ISPs)​ may offer Lifeline, or discounted service like Lifeline.

You must contact a provider that is participating in the Lifeline program. View a list of participating providers or use the federal Companies Near Me website.

How much money can I save with Lifeline? 

This depends on which type of service(s) you have, but your discount could be up to $18.50 per month. Alternatively, your provider may give you some number of free calls, texts and broadband per month. 

Your service provider can tell you what forms of Lifeline it offers. 

Who is eligible?

You are eligible if you participate in one of the following qualifying programs:

  • Medicaid  
  • FoodShare 
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) 
  • Federal public housing assistance (Section 8) 
  • Veterans and Survivors Pension Benefit 

Or, if your income is at or below 135% of the federal poverty guidelines​​.  

Only one person per household may receive a Lifeline discount, and that person may only receive one discount.

How can I find out if I am eligible?

You can check your eligibility online using on the FCC Lifeline National Verifier website

The National Verifier is connected to federal databases and can determine if you are enrolled in a qualifying program listed above. If you do not participate in a qualifying program, you must provide proof that you meet the federal income guidelines. Contact your provider or one of the numbers listed further down the page for assistance.

You may also apply for Lifeline using a paper form which can be downloaded and mailed in.  

The Federal Communications Commission recently announced new rules for people who are income-eligible because of recent unemployment due to the pandemic. You may submit: 

  • ​A notice of unemployment benefits payment
  • A notice of a successfully submitted application for unemployment benefits. 

All documents submitted must be dated within the last three months.

How to enroll

You must contact a provider that is participating in the Lifeline program. View a list of participating providers​ or use the federal Companies Near Me website.

You can determine your eligibility before you contact the provider, or you can ask them to help you find out if you are eligible.

For additional assistance ​

Wisconsin Internet & Phone Helpline
(608) 267-3595
Open Monday through Friday, from 7:45 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
Request an interpreter if you need assista
nce in a different language.

Federal (USAC) Lifeline Support
(800) 234-9473
Open Monday through Friday, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
lifelinesupport@usac.org


Download the informational sheet​ about Lifeline.