COVID-19 Update: USAC remains open for business—Washington, DC office closed. Learn more about USF program responses.

How To Use It

The Lifeline National Eligibility Verifier (National Verifier) is Lifeline’s application system that is used to determine whether consumers qualify for the program. The system will also recertify Lifeline subscribers annually.

Consumers may apply for Lifeline using the National Verifier through any of the options listed below:

  1. With the assistance of service providers through the service provider portal or a service provider website (National Verifier Eligibility Check API users),
  2. On their own using the consumer portal online, or
  3. By mailing in a paper application.

Service Provider Portal

Service providers can help consumers apply through the service provider portal by accessing the National Verifier on any computer or mobile device. This must be an in-person interaction.

To complete a Lifeline application the service provider will need to:

  • Visit the National Verifier.
  • Sign in using the applicable National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) or National Verifier-only credentials.
  • Use an interview-style approach to ask the consumer for the required information, complete the application, and upload documentation (if needed).
  • Ask the customer to initial and e-sign the online application themselves (service providers cannot initial or e-sign on behalf of a customer and cannot accept applications by phone).
  • After the system approves an eligible consumer, enroll them in NLAD.

Service providers can sign in to the portal at any time to see a list of active consumer applications associated with their account.

Service providers can enroll consumers in NLAD once they have an active and approved eligibility decision from the National Verifier. They will be unable to enroll consumers in NLAD without a qualified result.

Access to the Service Provider Portal

Each National Verifier user must have their own login credentials. Users may not share accounts.

NLAD Accounts: Service provider representatives can sign in to the National Verifier using their NLAD credentials.

“NV Only” Accounts: Sales associates who use the National Verifier but do not need NLAD access can receive “NV Only” accounts. This account type is created in NLAD and is called the “ETC Agent” role, giving users the ability to help consumers apply through the National Verifier portal.

National Verifier Staging Environment

The National Verifier staging environment allows users to use mock data to simulate service provider portal transactions, including eligibility checks and document uploads. Service providers should only use mock data in the National Verifier staging environment.

After “qualifying” test data in the National Verifier staging environment, service providers can enroll the test consumer in the NLAD staging environment. To test the enrollment, service providers should use the same data used in the National Verifier staging environment.

Detailed instructions, including mock data that will create specific results, are available in the National Verifier Staging User Guide.

USAC will not review all applications that require additional documentation in the staging environment. To request a manual review, email Lifeline Program with the application ID and desired result scenario (e.g., approve or reject this error) for each mock application. USAC will approve or reject mock applications based on the service provider request; however, this process will not validate that the documentation is acceptable.

Consumer Portal

Consumers can sign in to CheckLifeline.org from any computer or mobile device to apply for Lifeline.

After a consumer qualifies for Lifeline through the consumer portal, they need to contact a service provider to enroll in the program.

Apply by Mail

Consumers can fill out the National Verifier’s official Lifeline program Application Form and Household Worksheet (if needed) and mail them to the Lifeline Support Center (address available on the application form).

The consumer must complete all pages (except page 7, “Agent Information”*), initial each certification, and sign the form. USAC encourages consumers to write in capital letters and black ink.

In case the system cannot automatically verify the consumers’ eligibility, USAC recommends including the following items with the Application Form:

A Lifeline Support Center agent will review the application and send the consumer an eligibility decision via U.S. mail. After the consumer receives a notice that they qualified for Lifeline through the mailed application, they need to contact a service provider to enroll in the program.

*If an enrollment representative assists a consumer with the paper application, they must complete page 7 (“Agent Information”) of the paper application form.