Landline services may seem like outdated technology, but many benefits are attached to them. Interestingly, the government may offer free landline phone for seniors, low-income households, or other qualifying individuals based on the eligibility criteria. The federal Lifeline Program offers discounted phone and internet service to eligible members who require the security of a phone line but cannot afford the price.
However, free government cell phones for low income apply to individuals receiving federal assistance with programs such as SNAP and Medicaid. Through the help of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) website, you can search for phone providers that offer free landline services and discounts in your area. The federal government offers free landline phone services to seniors through the lifeline program with some phone service companies.
Moreover, this government aid is given to the elderly and applies to any qualified individual irrespective of age. Statistics indicate that four out of ten American households have discarded their landline home phones and resolved on cell phone service to stay connected. But, this norm should not be the case anymore, as older people can get such services for free that will enhance their daily life.
Benefits of a Landline Phone
Landline phones offer a set of advantages that includes:
- Accuracy in emergencies: You can quickly call 911 and instantly locate you on a landline since they receive a precise address, even if you can’t talk.
- Crystal clear sound: Landlines provide unbeatable call quality with zero dropped calls.
- Home security compatibility: Security systems depend on a home phone connection to reach out to your security personnel or the police in case of any problem.
- Savings by bundling services: Cable TV and internet providers provide packages that enable home phone service to be super cheap.
- International calling: You can receive great affordable international calling plan options using your landline provider.
What Are the Landline Phone Features
The most popular landline features include:
- Three-way calling: this feature is perfect for those conference calls or family phone time.
- Anonymous call rejects: You can block calls from hidden phone numbers.
- Assigned ringtones: You can give phone numbers specific ring tones to quickly identify who it is as soon as it rings.
- Call-ID and call waiting for caller ID: These are typically automatic with most landlines. It helps you see who’s calling before you answer.
- Call forwarding: You can have your home phone calls forwarded to your cell phone or another landline when unavailable.
- Blocking Call: You can select which numbers you need to bar from calling your phone.
- Call return: You can automatically dial the last number that called you.
- Speed dial: You can put your most frequently contacted numbers on speed dial.
- Do not disturb: if you need uninterrupted time, you can put your phone line on do not disturb mode.
How Do You Get A Free Landline Phone Service For Seniors
To qualify for the above service, you must meet some requirements before applying for the free government landline phone service. Generally, households who participate in various government assistance as explained herein qualify for these plans.
You can also qualify when your income is below 135 % of the federal poverty guidelines for your country. Additionally, families whose kids receive reduced or free lunch through the federal government stands a chance to qualify.
First, you must find a wireless service provider in your region that provides the Lifeline Assistance program. On the other hand, you must participate in any following programs to get these services.
- Federal Public Housing Assistance (FPHA)
- Food Stamps
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- National School Lunch Program’s Free School Lunch.
- Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Tribally-Administered Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
- Head Start for income eligibility criteria)
- Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR)
- Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).
- Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance
How To Apply For Free Government Landline Phones
When applying for free landline services, you must prove that you are eligible by offering documentation. Such documents include a letter to prove social security benefits, previous year tax returns, payroll from your current employer, child support, retirement, and unemployment benefits. You can follow the steps below for the application:
- Call your favorite landline phone service provider and application request.
- Fill and sign the application.
- Provide evidence of membership of any of the programs listed above. If you don’t participate in any of the programs, you can provide proof of revenue in your application.
How To Get Lifeline Assistance
There are two ways you can qualify for a lifeline; through the government assistance program or your revenue. You need to prove your eligibility for lifeline benefit with:
- Award letter or card to show membership of SNAP, Medicaid, or any other program
- A tax return or pay stub shows your revenue is less than 135% of the state poverty level.
i) Income Eligibility Documentation
If you qualify using the income-based criteria, you must present a tax return or pay stub to ascertain that your income is below 135% of the state poverty guidelines. To prove your income, give any of the following documents.
- The previous year’s federal, state, or tribal tax return
- Paycheck stub or recent revenue statement from an employer
- Workers Unemployment’s compensation statement of benefits
- Child support award, Divorce decree, or any other official document that contains income details
ii) Program Participation Documentation
If you qualify using the program participation criteria, you have to submit a document that includes:
- Name of the person enrolling for the services
- Name of the program, such as Medicaid
- Tribal or government administrator or managed care organization (MCO) that offered the document
What Are The Free Landline Providers for Seniors?
The following are some of the best free landline phone services for seniors:
1) Safelink Wireless
Safelink Wireless is one of the renowned and largest free government smartphone companies in the United States. This carrier provides cell services to more than 2 million clients in 31 states, including Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. The Company also offers free landline phone service to seniors. You will receive 500 minutes for the first 30 days and unlimited texts every month if you qualify.
However, to qualify for Safelink wireless free cell phone services, you must participate in an assistance program supported by the federal government. You can also receive these services if your household income is below the poverty guidelines of the country.
Additionally, the applicant must be a resident in the US and offer a physical and valid address in the application. Notably, this Company doesn’t accept post office box addresses. Applicants should attach documents to prove their application details based on their income and federal assistance.
2) Assurance Wireless
Assurance Wireless is another excellent provider of federal cell service in America, under Virgin mobile. The carrier provides qualified participants a free cell phone or landline, unlimited messages, and monthly income.
Additionally, your application gets accepted if you are a member of programs like SNAP and Medicaid. However, if you are not a participant in any of those programs, you must prove that your income is below the set standards, following the poverty level guidelines of your state.
3) Reachout Wireless
Reachout Wireless ranks top among the biggest carrier in the US that provides free government phones to less disadvantaged families. However, you can qualify for free landline services with the lifeline assistance program offered by the federal government through this carrier.
However, Reachout provides 250 minutes of talk time in several cities, unlimited talk time for California residents, and 350 minutes for customers in Oklahoma. Additionally, every message sent or received will get counted as one minute of the allowance.
Verizon customers qualifying for the Lifeline monthly discount receive a reduced home phone service bill every month. The Verizon customers residing in Tribal lands receive an extra monthly discount on their landline service and new home phone service installation.
Additionally, Verizon provides its customers the Home Connect Plan that goes $10.74 per month, and this plan offers you unlimited minutes after the Lifeline discount. However, the activation fee is a one-time fee of $35. Notably, the Lifeline Assistance programs differ from state to state. Plus, you can apply online via the Lifeline National Verifier.
CenturyLink allows the low-income earners to qualify for two assistant programs; the Telephone Assistance Program (TAP), an assistance program provided at the state level, and the Federal Lifeline program.
However, eligible lifeline customers get a discount of $9.25 per month. In tribal Lands, the qualified members can receive an additional monthly discount and assistance installing the newly subscribed customer using the Link-Up program. If you cannot get the Lifeline landline discount, you can search for cheap landline phone service for seniors to receive the best-discounted service in your area.
AT&T customers eligible for the Lifeline program can get a $9.25 monthly phone bill discount. If you qualify and reside in the Tribal Lands, you can receive an extra $25 discount per month on your phone bill.
Besides, you can contact AT&T to determine whether their services are present in your area. If you qualify for the AT&T free landline phone service, you must provide new certification every year within (60days) of notification to secure the Lifeline discount.
This guideline explains how you can receive free landline phone service for seniors and who is eligible to acquire such services. However, due to the challenges of aging, seniors need to be provided with an effective communication tool.
With the above-listed providers, the federal government offers free landline services to seniors to help them access emergency services and communicate promptly with their loved ones.