4 factors one needs to know about free cell phones by the government
There are several people in the country who are facing a tough time financially. Among the many expenses that they need to handle, they even face the dilemma of whether or not to continue paying for their cell phone, and in some cases, they even contemplate if they are capable of buying a cell phone. Cell phones have become an essential tool of communication and it can be difficult to live without them.
The government has sponsored a Lifeline Assistance Program that helps the financially disadvantaged people receive a cell phone along with either a certain or an unlimited number of minutes and text every month for no charge. There are millions of people who have availed of this program due to the financial difficulties.
What is the eligibility criteria for getting a free new Android phone?
There are a few rules and restrictions to the government free phone service and not everyone is eligible for this program. The eligibility criteria usually tend to be similar in all the states as the program is sponsored and regulated by the federal government. However, there might be minor differences depending upon the state one lives in. Generally, one is eligible for the program if they are participating in any of the federal benefits program mentioned below:
- Federal Public Housing Assistance (Section 8)
- Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance (BIA)
- Tribal Head Start (only those households meeting its income qualifying standard)
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Food Stamps or SNAP)
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Veterans Pension and Survivor’s Benefit.
- Tribally Administered Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (Tribal TANF)
- Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR)
Also, one can try to qualify for the program if they have low income or minimum income levels. There are many subscribers who have opted for the program through the low-income eligibility criteria.
Which states provide free new Android phones to low-income residents?
- The Lifeline Assistance Program offers free landline or free new Android phone in 49 states, Puerto Rico, and Washington D.C.
- The program had begun back in 2008 when a company named Tracfone started with their Safelink Wireless service. Since then, it has been eight years and the program has almost covered the entire country.
- Some of these states may offer unlimited calling and texting, and some may also have some data allowance along with it as well.
- There can be minor differences in the eligibility and the plans that every state offers. Some states may have the big companies as their providers while some may have a few small ones.
Where can one find a new free Android phone for seniors?
Since the Lifeline Assistance program has started providing free landline or free new Android phone to a certain sector of the population, there are many people who have enquired about free cell phones for seniors.
- There is no specific program for senior citizens where they can get a free cell phone. As, with this government program, irrespective of whether a person is a senior citizen or not, if they meet the eligible criteria they can enrol for the program and get a free cell phone.
- If any person either qualifies by a lower status of income or by participating in federal public assistance program like Medicaid, public housing, SSI, food stamps, and many other.
Which factors may compel one to return their free government cell phone?
The Lifeline Assistance Program has some extremely strict regulations and rules that one who is opting for the program has to adhere to. If one violates any of these rules, even accidently, they may lose their free government cell phone. Below are some factors due to which one may have to return their free government cell phone.
- Owning more than one phone per person
- Not recertifying annually to qualify for the program
- Getting off permissible government aid programs
- Owning more than one phone per household
- Failure to respond to the cell phone company’s request for certification
- Not using the free cell phone for 60 days or more
- Getting a job with an annual income that is above the federal poverty guidelines