National Verifier Recertification Process
Recertification is an annual requirement for Lifeline subscribers and is separate from reverification (one-time National Verifier process). This process is conducted to ensure that active Lifeline subscribers are still eligible for the Lifeline benefit.
Subscribers will only be due for recertification after they have successfully completed reverification or if they enrolled through the National Verifier.
Note: On June 30, 2022, the FCC released a waiver temporarily extending the previous Lifeline waivers of the recertification and reverification requirements through September 30, 2022 for Tribal subscribers only. This means that recertification and reverification requirements are on hold for all Tribal subscribers.
For all other Lifeline subscribers, automated eligibility database checks to verify the eligibility of subscribers due for recertification in 2022 started last month.
Every subscriber in National Verifier recertification will go through an initial automated data source check that will check for the subscriber’s eligibility.
Service providers will be able to see which subscribers are currently undergoing recertification via the Recertification Subscriber Status Report, which will be available in National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD). Subscribers whose eligibility cannot be verified via the initial automated check will be required to complete the Recertification Form and may be required to provide proof of eligibility. USAC will conduct outreach to these subscribers to inform them of the recertification requirement.
The chart below provides a high-level overview of the recertification process:
Subscribers that pass the data source check will not need to take any further action to retain their Lifeline benefit.
Subscribers that fail the data source check are required to complete the Recertification Form and have 60 days to recertify their continued eligibility. Failure to recertify during this time will result in automatic de-enrollment.
- Subscribers that fail the current recertification check, but passed their previous automated eligibility check, will be required to provide proof of eligibility and complete the Recertification Form.
A walkthrough of the recertification process can be found below:
Initial Data Source Check
- Every subscriber in National Verifier recertification will go through an initial automated data source check.
- Subscribers will only be checked for eligibility.
- Subscribers who pass the check will not need to take any further action.
- Subscribers who fail the check are required to complete the Recertification Form.
- Subscribers who fail the check, but passed their previous eligibility check are required to complete the Recertification Form and provide proof of eligibility.
Recertification Reports Populate in NLAD
- Service providers will be able to see which subscribers are currently undergoing recertification via the Recertification Subscriber Status Report in NLAD.
60-Day Recertification Window Opens
- The initial mailing to subscribers to initiate the recertification window will include:
- A letter notifying them of their recertification requirement (English & Spanish)
- A barcoded copy of FCC Form 5630 Annual Recertification Form (English & Spanish)
- If a subscriber does not successfully recertify within their 60-day window, USAC will notify the subscriber via mail within 2-3 business days after a subscriber’s window closes and the subscriber will be automatically de-enrolled from NLAD five (5) business days after the conclusion of their recertification window.
- After the de-enrollment has occurred, NLAD will send an automated email to notify the service provider and the Failed Recertification De-enroll Report will be updated.
Typical Recertification Timeline
The National Verifier recertification process will generally start 90 days before a subscriber’s anniversary date in NLAD. Recertification checks will be conducted every day and 60-day recertification windows will be initiated every business day.
The chart below provides a high-level overview of the typical recertification timeline:
60-Day Recertification Window
USAC will conduct outreach to subscribers who did not pass the automated data source check to inform them of their requirement to recertify their continued eligibility.
Subscribers will receive an initial notice informing them that they are due for recertification. Service providers can also contact consumers about pending recertification to inform them that should have heard from USAC and should respond to USAC.
Recertification Application Types and Methods for Recertifying
Recertify by Mail
- Subscribers who fail the initial automated checks will receive a barcoded version of Form 5630 from USAC to submit via mail.
- Subscribers will not receive written notice that USAC received their form after it is submitted, however they will be able to call the Lifeline Support Center for their status or the service provider can access this information via the Recertification Subscriber Status Report in NLAD.
- USAC will mail a notification confirming the subscriber’s continued eligibility to receive the Lifeline benefit shortly after the successful recertification attempt.
- Subscribers can recertify online via the National Verifier web portal. Instructions for recertifying online are provided in the letter to the subscriber.
- Subscribers find out immediately whether they pass/fail.
Recertify by Interactive Voice Response (IVR)
- Subscribers who are required to only complete the recertification form (R-Applications) can complete recertification through an interactive voice response (IVR) system. This process will take approximately 10 minutes to complete.
- Subscribers find out immediately whether they pass/fail.
- Subscribers will need their Application ID (provided on the recertification letter) to enter the IVR.
- Application ID is also available on the Recertification Subscriber Status Report in NLAD.
During the 60-day period, subscribers may receive up to three (3) pre-recorded messages and a reminder postcard. Subscribers will receive scheduled reminders until they successfully recertify.
Pre-recorded messages inform subscribers:
- That it is time to recertify their benefit,
- Of their deadline to recertify, and
- That they can continue immediately to recertify using the following the IVR (only available to R-Applications), recertify online (URL provided), or complete and return the mailed recertification form.