Lifeline

USAC-Elected Recertification

If your company selected USAC to conduct the annual rolling recertification process on its behalf, you're in the right place. Visit this page often to find the latest updates about the USAC-elected recertification process (for both 2017 and 2018). USAC will work with you throughout the process to successfully recertify your Lifeline subscribers.

Not sure if you are participating in 2017 or 2018? View this list of participating service providers.

On this page:

The Recertification Process

USAC recertifies your Lifeline customers in monthly batches. For example, we group customers who have anniversary dates from July 1 through July 31 into the "July Batch."

About a month before sending the recertification notification letters for a batch, we will pull a list of subscribers who have anniversaries in the coming batch month from the National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD). This list is called a "snapshot."

The snapshot is final. Any changes you make to subscriber records after we take the snapshot will not be incorporated into the recertification batch. You are not allowed to provide a separate or partial list for recertification.

See our webinar on USAC-elected recertification for more information on the recertification process.

Your To-Do List

USAC relies on participating companies for certain parts of the rolling recertification process. Please make sure you complete these action items by the deadlines.

  1. Review and update your Lifeline subscribers' information in NLAD before we generate the subscriber list for each batch. Up-to-date subscriber information in NLAD is critical for successful recertification. Check that every subscriber record has the following information:
    • A phone number (including broadband-only)
    • A valid mailing address (If the "Mailing Address" field is blank, we will use the "Service Address" field instead.)
  2. For each recertification batch, USAC will use the subscriber information in NLAD at the time of the published deadline. If you fail to make necessary updates by this deadline, those updates will not be included in USAC's recertification process (but you should still update NLAD).

    If the mailing address is incorrect for a subscriber, the subscriber will likely not receive USAC's initial notification. However, if the Lifeline Telephone Number in NLAD is correct, the subscriber should still receive the robo reminders. These subscribers can still recertify using the IVR or website methods.

    You can reach out to these subscribers directly to communicate about the recertification requirement, USAC's process, and the required response period. However, USAC discourages carriers from communicating exact dates until the recertification process is actually underway.

How to check your subscribers’ records

You can look up which of your Lifeline subscribers USAC will recertify and verify their contact information using the Detail Active Subscriber Report in NLAD.

  • Find the list of SACs you submitted to USAC for recertification.
    • Only Lifeline subscribers in the SACs you submitted to USAC will be included in the USAC-elected recertification process. (Elections for 2017 and 2018 recertification are closed.)
  • Log in to NLAD and select Reports from the left-hand menu.
  • Select the Detail Active Subscriber Report.
  • Select a SAC and your preferred download format.
  • Press Submit to download the report.
  • Sort the report by the Anniversary Date column (last column).
  • View the Lifeline subscribers listed for each anniversary month.
How to Find a Batch Snapshot

You can look up the (non-editable) snapshot, or list, we used to contact your subscribers for each batch in the ETC Recertification Snapshot Report.

  1. Log in to NLAD and select Reports from the left-hand menu.
  2. Select ETC Recertification Snapshot Report.
  3. Select a month and year from the drop-down filter.
  4. Press Submit to download the report.

 

  1. Use the USAC-Elected Recertification – Carrier Toolkit packet to familiarize your call center with the recertification process for customers so they're prepared to answer questions from customers. The packet includes an explanation of the customer process as well as the following resources:
  2. USAC does not offer live customer support for subscribers. We will direct all subscribers who need assistance to the carrier's customer support line as provided to USAC.

  1. Check back to this page for schedule and other process updates.

Results of the Recertification Process

Once the 60-day recertification window ends for a batch, USAC will send the results for each SAC via email (download the results template). You will need a password to open this file. You will receive a separate email with your password.

You must de-enroll failed subscribers from your internal company systems (and stop claiming reimbursement) within five (5) business days of receiving the recertification results from USAC. You are also responsible for de-enrolling failed subscribers in NLAD within one (1) business day after updating your internal company systems.

See the 2017 and 2018 schedules below for when you can expect to receive the results of the recertification process for each batch.

2017 Recertification Schedule

Here is the schedule of important milestones you and your Lifeline customers can expect for each month’s batch.

Note: Dates are subject to change. USAC discourages service providers from sharing specific dates with their subscribers.

Anniversary Month

July

August

September

October

November

December

Subscriber Anniversaries

July 1 – 31

Aug 1 – 31

Sept 1 – 30

Oct 1 – 31

Nov 1 – 30

Dec 1 – 31

Last day to update info in NLAD

2/10/2017

2/28/2017

4/18/2017

5/16/2017

6/13/2017

7/19/2017

60-Day Starts

3/24/2017

4/13/2017

5/18/2017

6/15/2017

7/13/2017

8/17/2017

60-Day Ends

5/22/2017

6/11/2017

7/16/2017

8/13/2017

9/10/2017

10/15/2017

Reminders Sent*

March 24 April 12
May 8

April 13 May 2
May 26

May 18
June 6
June 30 

June 15
July 5
July 28

July 13 August 25 Sept 5

August 17
Sept 29
October 10

Day 30 Postcard Reminder

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

8/11/2017

9/15/2017

Results to Service Providers

6/22/2017

7/19/2017

8/23/2017

9/21/2017

10/23/2017

Week of November 13

De-enroll failed subscribers from internal systems

6/29/2017

7/26/2017

8/30/2017

9/28/2017

10/30/2017

TBD

Automated call telling subscriber of pending de-enrollment

6/29/2017

7/26/2017

8/30/2017

9/28/2017

10/30/2017

TBD

* If the scheduled reminder falls on a weekend or a holiday, the reminder will be advanced or delayed by one day.

2018 Recertification Schedule

Here is the schedule of important milestones you and your Lifeline customers can expect for each month’s batch for anniversary dates in January through June 2018. Specific dates coming soon.

The recertification schedule for anniversary dates between July-December 2018 will be posted at a later date.

New for 2018

There are a few changes to the recertification process for 2018 that may impact call volumes you receive from your subscribers during the recertification process. Please review the changes listed below.

  • Robo reminders will be sent on Day 1, Day 45 and Day 55 of the 60-day recertification window.
  • A postcard reminder will be sent on Day 30 of the 60-day recertification window to all subscribers that have yet to successfully recertify. A digital copy of this postcard will be made available soon.

Note: Dates are subject to change. USAC discourages service providers from sharing specific dates with their subscribers.

Anniversary Month

January

February

March

April

May

June

Subscriber Anniversaries

Jan 1 – 31

Feb 1 – 28

Mar 1 – 31

Apr 1 – 30

May 1 – 31

Jun 1 – 30

Last day to update info in NLAD

8/21/2017

9/21/2017

10/24/2017

11/30/2017

12/26/2017

1/25/2018

60-Day Starts

9/27/2017

10/20/2017

TBD

TBD

TBD

TBD

60-Day Ends

11/25/2017

12/18/2017

TBD

TBD

TBD

TBD

Reminders Sent*

September 27
November 11
November 20

October 20
December 4
December 13

Day 1
Day 45
Day 55

Day 1
Day 45
Day 55

Day 1
Day 45
Day 55

Day 1
Day 45
Day 55

Day 30 Postcard Reminder

October 26

November 17

TBD

TBD

TBD

TBD

Results to Service Providers

Week of December 11

Week of January 22

TBD

TBD

TBD

TBD

De-enroll failed subscribers from internal systems

TBD

TBD

TBD

TBD

TBD

TBD

Automated call telling subscriber of pending de-enrollment

TBD

TBD

TBD

TBD

TBD

TBD

* If the scheduled reminder falls on a weekend or a holiday, the reminder will be advanced or delayed by one day.

States with a Waiver and Special Situations

Waiver States: Some states received a temporary waiver from Lifeline's streamlined list of eligibility programs, and USAC will honor state eligibility waivers (more details in FCC Order 16-1324). Up until the approved deadline, subscribers in these states will receive a modified version of the recertification form that still includes the retired eligibility programs.

Nebraska and Oregon: In Nebraska and Oregon, USAC will only recertify Tribal subscribers (these subscribers must be flagged as "Tribal" in NLAD to be included). The Nebraska and Oregon State Public Service/Utility Commissions will recertify non-tribal subscribers.

Obligation to Check Databases: Some states require service providers to first attempt confirming Lifeline eligibility via a database before contacting the subscribers directly. USAC will not be checking databases prior to mailing the recertification letters. USAC will recertify every subscriber listed in NLAD for the participating SAC; no partial lists are permitted. If this situation puts your company in violation of your state's law, email us to cancel your USAC-recertification election.

Help

Watch the webinar recording to the right for detailed information about the 2017 USAC-elected recertification process. Follow along with the printable slide deck.

If you have newly elected USAC for 2018, still reference this webinar as there are only minor changes to the 2018 process.

Contact Us

If you have need assistance or have any other questions, contact us at LIVerifications@usac.org.

Update Your Contact Info

Need to update the contact information for your company? Please complete the election spreadsheet and email to LIVerifications@usac.org.

FAQs

Show All Answers

 

Q1: After the 60-day recertification window expires, are we able to recertify those subscribers that missed the window?

A1: No. Any effort to recertify a subscriber outside of their 60-day recertification window is not valid. However, if a subscriber is de-enrolled but you believe they are still eligible for Lifeline, you may enroll them again as a new Lifeline subscriber.

Q2: If USAC is unsuccessful, can I recertify my subscribers directly?

A2: Companies that elect USAC to perform recertification should make every reasonable effort to assist subscribers through USAC's established process. If the subscriber has exhausted all three recertification method options and is still unable to recertify, the company may recertify that subscriber directly. More detail about this is in the 2016 Public Notice.

If you do recertify subscribers directly, your recertification must still be completed within the 60-day window established by USAC. As their Lifeline provider, you must retain documentation of the recertification as required by the record-keeping requirements found in CFR 54.417. Also note that this recertification will not be included in the recertification results provided by USAC, and these subscribers will continue to receive recertification reminders as well as a de-enrollment notice from USAC.

Q3: Will USAC automatically de-enroll my failed subscribers from NLAD?

A3: No. The participating company is responsible for de-enrolling their failed customers from NLAD within one (1) business day of removing the failed subscribers from their internal company systems. (Reminder: participating companies must remove customers from their internal company systems within five days).

Q4: How do I change the anniversary date of a subscriber?

A4: You can't. The "Anniversary Date" is not an editable field in NLAD. It is automatically generated based on the subscribers' transactional history. In most cases, the subscriber's anniversary date is every 12 months after the service initiation date. To learn about situations that impact an anniversary date (specifically, service disruptions or a changed service type), see scenarios #5 and #6 on the Rolling Recertification page.

Q5: Can I receive live subscriber status updates?

A5: Unfortunately, no. USAC does not have the ability to provide live recertification status updates during the 60-day response window to either service providers or subscribers. After the conclusion of the 60-day response window, service providers will receive a file containing the results of the recertification, and the subscribers will receive a de-enrollment notification if they failed to recertify.

Q6: What updates need to be made in NLAD after recertification and who is responsible for making those updates? USAC?

A6: Carriers are responsible for making any necessary updates to NLAD after recertification. This includes but is not limited to de-enrollments for non-responding or failed subscribers and changes to eligibility programs for subscribers that recertified. Carriers may also choose to update the "Reverification Date" field in NLAD, but note that this is an optional field and has no impact on the subscriber's actual anniversary date.

Q7: How many opportunities will a subscriber have to recertify? If they fail one attempt, can they try again?

A7: Until a subscriber has successfully recertified, there is no limit to the number of times a subscriber may attempt to recertify within the established 60 day response period.

Q8: What do I do if a subscriber says they lost or did not receive their form?

A8: If a subscriber lost or did not receive their recertification form, first verify they are part of an active recertification batch by referencing the Recertification Snapshot in NLAD. If the subscriber is part of an active recertification batch, you can direct them to the website or the IVR to recertify.

Q9: Should I outreach to subscribers in advance of USAC's process?

A9: Yes, USAC encourages service providers to educate their subscribers about who USAC is, why we are reaching out to them, and our recertification process. However, we discourage you from providing exact dates until the batch process is underway as these dates are subject to change and providing them in advance may inadvertently trigger the 60-day response window.