What Is the California LifeLine Program?


Quick Answer

The California LifeLine program provides discounts on home phone and cellphone services to qualifying low-income individuals and families. The Public Utilities Commission of the California runs the program and publishes the eligibility guidelines on its website.

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Full Answer

To qualify for the LifeLine program, a California resident must have an income level below an established threshold. A person may also qualify if she receives assistance from the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, Women, Infants and Children Program, National School Lunch Program or a similar government assistance program. The program normally only allows one discount per household.

Among the discounts that the program offers are a flat-rate local landline or cellular telephone service, phone service for consumers living on tribal lands, measured local telephone service, discounts on service connection, and disability accommodations. The flat-rate local telephone service includes unlimited local calls at a lower price than a local carrier. LifeLine provides additional discounts to qualifying consumers living on tribal lands. The measured local telephone service has a limit of 60 local calls per month at lower prices than the carrier's rate, while disability accommodation aims at hearing impaired members of a household by offering the potential of a second discount line for TTY service.

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