CenturyLink is one of the providers in the United States for service in rural areas. This carrier strongly supports the programs by the FCC that offer communicational benefits. However, the mission of the CenturyLink Affordable Connectivity Program is to assist low-income households with unlimited internet access. CenturyLink participates in this program by offering affordable and high-speed internet. This assistance helps households can remain connected to essential communication services.

    Most importantly, the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) is a newly developed program created by Congress and led by the FCC. This program replaced the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program (EBBP) and made the internet more affordable. Notably, the ACP offers $30 per month toward your internet bill or $75 per month for qualified Tribal households. You can also acquire a one-time discount of up to $100 towards purchasing a tablet, laptop, or desktop computer.

    However, CenturyLink is a telecommunication company that offers CenturyLink business internet and broadband networks across 25 states. Besides, the households that participated in the Emergency Broadband Benefit due to substantial loss of income after job loss or layoff due to COVID-19 will have to re-qualify for the Affordable Connectivity Program. Additionally, all customers must apply for Lifeline via the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC). 

    The Federal Communication Commission (FCC) administered the Affordable Connectivity Program through participating providers, including CenturyLink. However, CenturyLink participates in this program by providing a  discount of up to $30 per month for qualified households. The households in Tribal areas receive up to a $75 discount. CenturyLink is a renowned Fiber Gigabyte Internet provider, and qualified ACP customers will enjoy a wide range of internet speeds of up to 940Mbps.

    On the other hand, CenturyLink is an approved ACP benefit provider that helps low-income households afford and stay connected with internet services. However, qualified households can apply to subscribe to this program. Each household receives one temporary monthly benefit on the internet service bill. The USAC website takes you through eligibility and application.

    However, after the USAC qualification gets completed, notify CenturyLink with your confirmation number to have the discount credited to your qualifying service. CenturyLink customers can also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 for buying computers, laptops, or tablets. Besides, you have to pay $10-$50 of the device cost, and you can purchase it via the broadband provider.

    Fortunately, the Federal Communication Commission declared that the Lifeline and EBB members automatically receive the ACP if they apply. However, households must send their eligibility request with correct information about the required documentation. You can apply for the CenturyLink Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) if you meet any Affordable Connectivity Program eligibility. Follow the steps below to get started:

    • Step 1: Finish the USAC eligibility verification. The National Verifier will notify you whether you qualify for the program benefits. When filling out the National Verifier form, utilize the same information as for the primary holder of your CenturyLink account. Proceed to the USAC Verifier website and confirm your household’s eligibility status. The USAC will tell whether you qualify for ACP. You will receive a notification from the national verifier regarding your status.
    • Step 2: Fill out the CenturyLink form to have the discount added to your account. To receive a new ACP service, you can contact the CenturyLink support team at 866-642-0444. Ensure that your current CenturyLink account qualifies for the ACP benefits. Don’t proceed to step 3 until you have conversed with an agent.
    • Step 3: Complete the CenturyLink form. To apply for the ACP discount through CenturyLink, you have to fill out the CenturyLink.

    i) Based on Your Income

    You can qualify for ACP if your income is 200% or less than the Federal Poverty Guidelines. The guideline depends on your household size and state. If you or a household member participate in one of the below programs, you can apply for ACP.

    • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
    • Federal Public Housing Assistance (FPHA)
    • Food Stamps are currently known as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
    • Veterans Pension and Survivors Benefit
    • Medicaid
    • Free and Reduced-Price School Lunch Program or School Breakfast Program, at U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Community Eligibility Provision schools in the  2021-22, 2020-21, or 2019-20 school year.
    • Acquired a Federal Pell Grant in the current award year.
    • Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for WIC (women, infants, and children).

    ii) Tribal Assistance Programs

    If you reside on qualifying Tribal lands, you can receive ACP if your household income equals or less than 200% of the Federal Poverty levels or if you or a household member participates in:

    • Any of the above federal assistance programs 
    • Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance
    • Tribal TANF
    • Head Start (only households meeting the income qualifying standard)
    • Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations

    iii) If You Already Have a Lifeline Benefit

    Lifeline is a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) program that makes communications services affordable for low-income families. If you are currently receiving  CenturyLink low-income internet under the lifeline program, you are automatically eligible for the ACP. Interestingly, you can get both benefits at the same time. You can apply your ACP and Lifeline benefits to similar or separate services. Contact your internet company to know how to begin receiving ACP discounts.

    Documents Needed To Show Your Qualification

    When applying for the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) benefit, you may submit additional information or documentation if the verifier cannot confirm your identity, eligibility, or address. After getting contacted to give additional information to confirm your eligibility, you must provide the following documentation.

    i) Qualifying Program Participation Documentation

    If you participate in qualifying programs, give a letter or official document as proof. Documentation include:

    • Your (or your dependent’s) full name
    • The qualifying program, such as SNAP
    • The name of the government,  program administrator, Tribal entity, university, school, school district, or college that provided the document.
    • An Issuance date within the last 12 months or a future expiration date.
    • For the Free and Reduced Price School Lunch Program or School Breakfast Program, documents can be from the 2019-20, 2020-21, or 2021-22 academic year.
    • For USDA Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) schools, documents must indicate that the student participates in a CEP School for the 2019-2020, 2020-2021, or 2021-2022 school years. Acceptable documentation comprises a report card that bears the student’s name and the school or a form showing that the student participates in the CEP school.
    • For Federal Pell Grants, documents must feature the current academic year and can comprise screenshots of a StudentAid.gov dashboard.
    Eligible Document Includes:
    • Benefit award letter
    • Approval letter
    • Statement of benefits
    • Benefit verification letter

    ii) Household Income Documentation

    If you qualify following your income, you will be required to offer a document that indicates that your annual income equals or less than 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. Documentation include:

    • Your (or your dependent’s) full name
    • Your annual income
    Eligible Document Includes:
    • A Social Security statement of benefits.
    • Veterans Administration statement of benefits.
    • Previous year’s federal, state, or Tribal tax return.
    • Recent income statement from your employer or a paycheck stub.
    • Unemployment or Worker’s Compensation statement of benefits.
    • Child support award, divorce decree, or a similar official document indicating your income.
    • A retirement/pension statement of benefits.

    Bottom Line

    CenturyLink believes that having reliable internet service is more important than ever. For this reason, this carrier participates in the Affordable Connectivity Program but many plans to help low- and fixed-income customers to afford internet services. Fortunately, CenturyLink offers multiple plans and support programs such as ACP you can take advantage of.

    The low-income service or free high-speed internet. After you’ve submitted an application form, CenturyLink sends messages about your application and notice of approval or the next steps required to get approved.