State Eligibility Verification Processes

USAC is working diligently with states, territories, federal and tribal partners to bring more consumers into the National Verifier in 2019. Once a state enters the National Verifier, the responsibility of eligibility determinations will move from service providers to the National Verifier. Until the National Verifier is launched in all 56 states and territories, the process to verify Lifeline eligibility varies by state.

In many states, service providers are responsible for verifying whether a subscriber is eligible for Lifeline before providing the benefit, and recertifying eligibility annually. In other states, service providers must use a state-specific process to confirm eligibility.

A Tool for Lifeline Service Providers

This list is maintained by USAC to inform service providers about state application processes and available eligibility databases. It is not official and is not a replacement for state and FCC rules. For the most up-to-date information about eligibility verification processes and available eligibility data sources for each state, speak to the state regulator or Lifeline administrator directly.

Please note that the National Verifier will be the standard tool used across all states and territories for eligibility determination in the future.

If a state does not appear on this list, USAC has not received information indicating that the state has a unique application process or an eligibility database. Help us keep this list up-to-date! If you believe this list is inaccurate or have new information to add, contact us at LifelineProgram@usac.org.

List Key: State-Specific Eligibility Processes

  • Application Process shows the process consumers follow to apply for Lifeline.
  • Entity Responsible for Eligibility Verification shows who is responsible for verifying that the consumer has a qualifying income or participates in a qualifying program, and verifying that they are claiming only one benefit per household.
  • Form Requirements, including whether consumers should use the Lifeline universal consumer forms or a state-specific form, and state-specific requirements.
  • State Data Sources available to service providers. If a data source is available, service providers are required to query it to verify eligibility prior to conducting a manual eligibility review.
  • Aligned with Streamlined Federal Eligibility Criteria shows the status communicated to USAC or the FCC of whether the state’s Lifeline eligibility systems and process were updated in time to align with the streamlined federal eligibility criteria.*

* If a state’s eligibility verification database or process is not updated, service providers cannot rely on it to determine a subscriber’s eligibility from December 2, 2016, until it is updated. The FCC granted a temporary waiver to some states, which allows service providers to continue using the database for the duration of the waiver or until the database meets the FCC’s rules (whichever is sooner). More information is available in the Order released December 1, 2016.

Skip to: States A – CStates D – IStates K – MStates N – NStates O – TStates U – Z

States A – C

Alabama

The National Verifier soft launched in Alabama on October 11, 2019. Service providers have the option to continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures or use the National Verifier during the soft launch period.

USAC has not received information indicating that the state has a unique application process or an eligibility database available to service providers. Complete a manual eligibility review and use the universal consumer forms.

Alaska

The National Verifier hard launched in Alaska on May 7, 2019. Consumers in Alaska can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

American Samoa

The National Verifier hard launched in American Samoa on May 7, 2019. Consumers in American Samoa can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Arizona

The National Verifier hard launched in Arizona on Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Consumers in Arizona can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Arkansas

The National Verifier soft launched in Arkansas on October 11, 2019. Service providers have the option to continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures or use the National Verifier during the soft launch period.

USAC has not received information indicating that the state has a unique application process or an eligibility database available to service providers. Complete a manual eligibility review and use the universal consumer forms.

California

  • Application Process: For voice or bundled service types, consumers contact California Lifeline to begin the application process. For broadband-only service, consumers apply through a participating service provider.
  • Entity Responsible for Eligibility Verification: Service providers are responsible for using the state’s process to verify eligibility for voice or bundled service types. Service providers must verify the eligibility of broadband-only subscribers, and enter broadband-only subscribers in NLAD.
  • Form Requirements: CA Lifeline Application, Recertification, and IEH will be required for all Lifeline consumers in CA, with the exception of consumers receiving broadband-only service. All broadband-only subscribers will be required to use the universal consumer forms.
  • State Data Sources: Not available to service providers.
  • Aligned with Streamlined Federal Eligibility Criteria? California received a temporary waiver from streamlining the list of eligibility programs until October 31, 2017, and received an extension of the temporary waiver until April 30, 2018. Yes – the state’s eligibility system/process was in compliance as of April 30, 2018.

Colorado

The National Verifier hard launched in Colorado on November 2, 2018. Consumers in Colorado can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Connecticut

The National Verifier hard launched in Connecticut on Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Consumers in Connecticut can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

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States D – I

Delaware

The National Verifier hard launched in Delaware on May 7, 2019. Consumers in Delaware can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

District of Columbia

The National Verifier hard launched in the District of Columbia on May 7, 2019. Consumers in the District of Columbia can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Florida

  • Application Process: Consumers can apply through a Lifeline service provider, visit the Florida website, apply through the DCF (SNAP/Medicaid recipients only), or through the Florida OPC (if qualifying based on income).
  • Entity Responsible for Eligibility Verification: Service providers. Service providers should also be prepared to receive eligibility information from the Florida PSC, DCF and OPC.
  • Form Requirements: Use the Lifeline universal consumer forms beginning July 1, 2018.
  • State Data Sources: Yes – service providers must query the Lifeline Database, which is administered by the FL PSC and validates SNAP and Medicaid Participation. To request access, contact Greg Fogleman at (850) 413-6574.
  • Aligned with Streamlined Federal Eligibility Criteria? Yes – the state’s eligibility system/process was in compliance as of December 2, 2016.

Georgia

The National Verifier hard launched in Georgia on Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Consumers in Georgia can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Guam

The National Verifier hard launched in Guam on January 15, 2019. Consumers in Guam can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Hawaii

The National Verifier hard launched in Hawaii on January 15, 2019. Consumers in Hawaii can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the  National Verifier.

Idaho

The National Verifier hard launched in Idaho on January 15, 2019. Consumers in Idaho can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Illinois

  • Application Process: Consumer applies through a participating service provider.
  • Entity Responsible for Eligibility Verification: Service Providers.
  • Form Requirements: Use the Lifeline universal consumer forms beginning July 1, 2018.
  • State Data Sources: Yes – service providers must query the LEVS database is available to some service providers, however the DHS is not accepting new requests for access.
  • Aligned with Streamlined Federal Eligibility Criteria? Yes – eligibility system/process was in compliance as of January 17, 2017. Service providers could not rely on the system/process for eligibility determinations between December 2, 2016 and January 17, 2017.

Indiana

The National Verifier hard launched in Indiana on June 11, 2019. Consumers in Indiana can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Iowa

The National Verifier hard launched in Iowa on Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Consumers in Iowa can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

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States K – M

Kansas

The National Verifier hard launched in Kansas on Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Consumers in Kansas can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Kentucky

The National Verifier hard launched in Kentucky on June 11, 2019. Consumers in Kentucky can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Louisiana

The National Verifier soft launched in Louisiana on October 11, 2019. Service providers have the option to continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures or use the National Verifier during the soft launch period.

USAC has not received information indicating that the state has a unique application process or an eligibility database available to service providers. Complete a manual eligibility review and use the universal consumer forms.

Maine

The National Verifier hard launched in Maine on May 7, 2019. Consumers in Maine can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Maryland

The National Verifier soft launched in Maryland on October 11, 2019. Service providers have the option to continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures or use the National Verifier during the soft launch period.

USAC has not received information indicating that the state has a unique application process or an eligibility database available to service providers. Complete a manual eligibility review and use the universal consumer forms.

Massachusetts

The National Verifier soft launched in Massachusetts on October 11, 2019. Service providers have the option to continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures or use the National Verifier during the soft launch period.

USAC has not received information indicating that the state has a unique application process or an eligibility database available to service providers. Complete a manual eligibility review and use the universal consumer forms.

Michigan

The National Verifier hard launched in Michigan on June 11, 2019.  Consumers in Michigan can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Minnesota

  • Application Process: Consumer applies through a participating service provider.
  • Entity Responsible for Eligibility Verification: Service Providers.
  • Form Requirements: Use the Lifeline universal consumer forms beginning July 1, 2018.
  • State Data Sources: Yes – the DHS can supply eligibility data to validate participation in SNAP and Medicaid for recertification (cannot be used for initial eligibility verification).
  • Aligned with Streamlined Federal Eligibility Criteria? Yes – the state’s eligibility system/process was in compliance as of December 2, 2016.

Mississippi

The National Verifier hard launched in Mississippi on November 2, 2018. Consumers in Mississippi can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Missouri

The National Verifier hard launched in Missouri on March 5, 2019. Consumers in Missouri can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Montana

The National Verifier hard launched in Montana on November 2, 2018. Consumers in Montana can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

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States N

Nebraska

The National Verifier hard launched in Nebraska on Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Consumers in Nebraska can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Nevada

The National Verifier hard launched in Nevada on Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Consumers in Nevada can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

New Hampshire

The National Verifier hard launched in New Hampshire on January 15, 2019. Consumers in New Hampshire can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

New Jersey

The National Verifier soft launched in New Jersey on October 11, 2019. Service providers have the option to continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures or use the National Verifier during the soft launch period.

USAC has not received information indicating that the state has a unique application process or an eligibility database available to service providers. Complete a manual eligibility review and use the universal consumer forms.

New Mexico

The National Verifier hard launched in New Mexico on November 2, 2018. Consumers in New Mexico can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

New York

The National Verifier hard launched in New York on Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Consumers in New York can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

North Carolina

The National Verifier hard launched in North Carolina on March 5, 2019. Consumers in North Carolina can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

North Dakota

The National Verifier hard launched in North Dakota on January 15, 2019. Consumers in North Dakota can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Northern Mariana Islands

The National Verifier hard launched in the Northern Mariana Islands on May 7, 2019. Consumers in the Northern Mariana Islands can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

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States O – T

Ohio

USAC has not received information indicating that the state has a unique application process or an eligibility database available to service providers. Complete a manual eligibility review and use the universal consumer forms.

Oklahoma

The National Verifier soft launched in Oklahoma on October 11, 2019. Service providers have the option to continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures or use the National Verifier during the soft launch period.

USAC has not received information indicating that the state has a unique application process or an eligibility database available to service providers. Complete a manual eligibility review and use the universal consumer forms.

Oregon

  • Application Process: Consumers apply through the Oregon PUC.
  • Entity Responsible for Eligibility Verification: For non-Tribal consumers, service providers are responsible for using the PUC of Oregon’s process to validate participation in all qualifying programs and income level. For consumers that live on Tribal lands, service providers are responsible for eligibility verification.
  • Form Requirements: The form required depends on the service type and whether the consumer is Tribal:
  • State Data Sources: Not available to service providers. The Oregon PUC uses the DHS and OHA databases to validate participation in SNAP, Medicaid, and SSI.
  • Aligned with Streamlined Federal Eligibility Criteria? Yes – the state’s eligibility system/process was in compliance as of December 2, 2016.

Pennsylvania

The National Verifier hard launched in Pennsylvania on March 5, 2019. Consumers in Pennsylvania can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Puerto Rico

The National Verifier soft launched in Puerto Rico on October 11, 2019. Service providers have the option to continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures or use the National Verifier during the soft launch period.

USAC has not received information indicating that the state has a unique application process or an eligibility database available to service providers. Complete a manual eligibility review and use the universal consumer forms.

Rhode Island

The National Verifier hard launched in Rhode Island on May 7, 2019. Consumers in Rhode Island can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

South Carolina

The National Verifier soft launched in South Carolina on October 11, 2019. Service providers have the option to continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures or use the National Verifier during the soft launch period.

USAC has not received information indicating that the state has a unique application process or an eligibility database available to service providers. Complete a manual eligibility review and use the universal consumer forms.

South Dakota

The National Verifier hard launched in South Dakota on January 15, 2019. Consumers in South Dakota can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Tennessee

The National Verifier hard launched in Tennessee on March 5, 2019. Consumers in Tennessee can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Texas

  • Application Process: Consumers apply through the Texas PUC.
  • Entity Responsible for Eligibility Verification: Service providers are responsible for using the state’s process to verify eligibility, which validates participation in all qualifying programs and income level.
  • Form Requirements: The TX Lifeline Application, Household Worksheet, Recertification will be required for all consumers.
  • State Data Sources: Yes – the TXLAD validates participation in SNAP and Medicaid. To request access, contact the administrator at (973) 581-5052.
  • Aligned with Streamlined Federal Eligibility Criteria? Yes – the state’s eligibility system/process was in compliance as of December 2, 2016.

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States U – Z

Utah

The National Verifier hard launched in Utah on November 2, 2018. Consumers in Utah can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Vermont

The National Verifier hard launched in Vermont on Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Consumers in Vermont can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Virgin Islands

The National Verifier hard launched in the Virgin Islands on May 7, 2019. Consumers in the Virgin Islands can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Virginia

The National Verifier hard launched in Virginia on Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Consumers in Virginia can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Washington

The National Verifier soft launched in Washington on October 11, 2019. Service providers have the option to continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures or use the National Verifier during the soft launch period.

USAC has not received information indicating that the state has a unique application process or an eligibility database available to service providers. Complete a manual eligibility review and use the universal consumer forms.

West Virginia

The National Verifier hard launched in West Virginia on Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Consumers in West Virginia can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

Wisconsin

  • Application Process: Consumer applies through a participating service provider.
  • Entity Responsible for Eligibility Verification: Service Providers.
  • Form Requirements: Use the Lifeline universal consumer forms beginning July 1, 2018. Wisconsin requires the consumer’s signed consent before using the CALER database, which service providers can add as a separate page to the forms.
  • State Data Sources: Yes – service providers must query the CALER database, which is administered by the DHS and validates participation in SNAP, Medicaid, SSI and income level. To request access, contact the WI DHS.
  • Aligned with Streamlined Federal Eligibility Criteria? Received a temporary waiver from streamlining eligibility programs until December 31, 2017; Yes – the state’s eligibility system/process was in compliance as of November 4, 2017.

Wyoming

The National Verifier hard launched in Wyoming on November 2, 2018. Consumers in Wyoming can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online. Visit our website for more information about the National Verifier.

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Last updated on 9/26/2019. This list will be updated regularly based on USAC’s understanding of state processes and provider needs to remain in compliance. If you believe this information is inaccurate, please notify USAC.