State Eligibility Verification Processes
USAC partners with states, territories, federal and tribal partners to maintain a growing number of consumers in the National Verifier.
As of December 2019, all states and territories must use the National Verifier to determine a consumer’s eligibility for the Lifeline program. Consumers can apply through a service provider, or on their own by mail or online.
Information on how the National Verifier determines eligibility is found on our Eligibility Decision Process page.
*California, Oregon, and Texas will continue to operate their eligibility verification and duplicate checking processes; and apply for the federal Lifeline benefit through their state’s application process. The National Verifier will perform reviews for program integrity purposes.
The specific processes for California, Oregon, and Texas are described below.
State Specific Processes
- 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.
- 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 levels. 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:
- Non-tribal consumers (prepaid wireless): prepaid wireless service providers are required to use the Oregon Lifeline Application and Oregon Household Worksheet. The Oregon PUC manages recertification, using the Oregon Recertification Form.
- Non-tribal consumers (landline and wireless): verification and recertification are managed by the Oregon PUC, using the Oregon Lifeline Application, Oregon Household Worksheet, and Oregon Recertification Form.
- Tribal consumers: service providers are required to use the universal consumer forms beginning July 1, 2018
- 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 levels.
- Form Requirements: The TX Lifeline Application, Household Worksheet, Recertification will be required for all consumers.
Last updated on 07/31/2020. This page 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.