LI Program News - November 17, 2017

November 17, 2017


What to Do If USAC Will Not Process Your FCC Form 497 Reimbursement Claim


Earlier this year, the Lifeline Program introduced a new standard for FCC Form 497: service providers can claim reimbursement for no more than the total number of subscribers entered in NLAD on the snapshot date.

If a service provider attempts to claim more subscribers than what is captured in NLAD, USAC will not process their FCC Form 497 (USAC will send email notices to these service providers). 

If your form isn't processed, your company will not receive payment until the form is revised to meet this standard. Before you submit the corrected filing, log into NLAD to view the "Summary and Detail Subscriber Snapshot Report," and re-submit your filing for no more than the total number of subscribers included in the report. Contact the Lifeline Program's FCC Form 497 team if you need assistance.


FCC Forms 497 Changes

National Verifier Acceptable Documents

Hurricane Relief

Updates to USAC's Website

National Verifier Training

Webinar on November 29

If a service provider failed to include all of their Lifeline subscribers in NLAD before the snapshot date, unfortunately the service provider cannot retroactively add the subscribers to NLAD for reimbursement purposes. Reimbursement is only available for subscribers that were entered in NLAD on the snapshot date. 

Please be aware of these recent and upcoming changes to the FCC Form 497/reimbursement process:

  1. August 2017 data month (September 1 snapshot): USAC began rejecting FCC Forms 497 that claimed reimbursement for more subscribers than are entered in NLAD.
  2. October 19, 2017: The new "Lifeline Claims System" became available in the NLAD pre-production environment.
  3. January 2017: Training about how to use the Lifeline Program's new reimbursement claims process.
  4. January 2018 data month (February 1 snapshot): Service providers will need to use a new process – the "Lifeline Claims System" – to claim their Lifeline reimbursements for the January 2018 data month (February 1 snapshot) and onward. The FCC Form 497 will be retired. However, service providers should continue using FCC Form 497 and E-File when filing or revising the December 2017 data month (January 1 snapshot) and earlier.

List of Acceptable Documentation for the National Verifier


The list of acceptable consumer eligibility documentation for the National Verifier is now available. USAC will continue to add to this list; please refer to our website for continued updates on acceptable documentation. 

View this list here: National Verifier Acceptable Eligibility Documentation

Once the National Verifier launches in a state, consumers must be approved as eligible for Lifeline by the National Verifier. In general, the types of proof-of-eligibility the National Verifier will accept must include the consumer's name, at least one program identifier, and be issued, approved, or sponsored by the state or federal government.


Relief for Areas Impacted by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria


On October 6, 2017, the FCC issued an order to assist Lifeline Program participants in areas impacted by hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria. The orders temporarily waive the recertification and non-usage rules for Lifeline consumers in Florida, parts of Georgia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Learn more on the USAC Hurricane Relief web page.

These temporary waivers will have an impact on FCC Form 555 reporting for 2017. More information on how to account for these waivers on FCC Forms 555 will be available in the next few weeks.


Notable Updates to USAC's Website 


A number of new resources are now available on the Lifeline Program section of USAC's website, including:

Search for a Lifeline Provider by ZIP Code: The Companies Near Me map on is updated; users can now search for Lifeline service providers by ZIP code (previously, users could only search by state). The new tool was created based on NLAD data. Wherever a service provider has Lifeline subscribers, those ZIP codes are included on the map. If your company provides Lifeline-supported service in additional ZIP codes, please complete this template and submit it to USAC.

New "Process Overview" Information for Beginners: The Process Overview page was re-designed to include information for service provider representatives who are new to the Lifeline Program. Visit this page to learn how to get started in the Lifeline Program, including setting up accounts and contact information with USAC, service provider responsibilities, and an overview of the program's rules and recordkeeping requirements.

Example of Lifeline Application Form: Examples of consumer forms that meet the Federal Lifeline Program's requirements are now available on the Lifeline Program Forms page. More information about the federal requirements for the consumer application form (eligibility certification form) is available on the Verify Subscriber Eligibility web page.


National Verifier Training Sessions Underway


The National Verifier will "soft launch" next month in Colorado, Mississippi, Montana, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming, and specialized training for service providers in those states is underway. The training sessions cover a high-level overview of the system and how to use it, as well as the reverification process. Recordings of these sessions are available in the Online Learning Library. For preview of the system, join us for the Webinar on Nov. 29: National Verifier Walkthrough.


Webinar on November 29: Register for the Next Lifeline Program Update


Join us on Wednesday, November 29 for our monthly Lifeline Program webinar. This month, we will provide an overview of the National Verifier design for stakeholders that are not in the initial launch states.

You can always access the webinar slides and recordings from previous webinars on our Lifeline Program Update Webinars page.


Lifeline Program Newsletter

November 2017

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