The Lifeline program for low-income consumers provides discounted phone services for consumers whose incomes fall below a certain threshold, according to the Federal Communications Commission. These discounts are designed to insure that low-income individuals are able to communicate with family, prospective employers and emergency services when necessary.
As of 2015, the Lifeline program makes discounts available on both traditional and wireless phones, says the FCC. The program is available throughout the United States and its territories. To be eligible for the program, a consumer must either have an income that does not exceed 135 percent of the federal poverty guidelines or participate in certain federal assistance programs listed on the FCC's website.