Lifeline program and free cell phones is a federal program helping low-income households that meet low-income eligibility requirements to obtain phone services. Seventeen states qualify for this program including Wisconsin. Within the state about 547,000 households likely quality for a free phone. Wisconsin is behind other states in business development and income it consistently ranks near the bottom of the fifty states in creation of new companies. Residents of the Badger State have suffered as a result. With the current economy the government feels it is increasingly important to have phone access. Having phone service can help low-income households reached more easily by potential employers, or even to obtain help if stranded by the side of the road. You may be eligable to receive free government cell phones in Wisconsin.
State of Wisconsin has two providers who offer free government cell phones, ReachOut Wireless and Safelink Wireless. These providers offer free mobile service, mobile access to emergency services and 60 or 250 minutes, depending on which plan you choose, with unused minutes rolling over to the next month. But there are differences between the plans and the phones they give out. After a year when the plan is done program participants may reapply for the free service.
To be eligible in Wisconsin for the fee phone service households must participate in one of the following:
- Badger Care
- Food Stamp Programs
- Low Income Home Energy Assistance (LIHEAP)
- Medical Assistance (MA)
- Supplemental Security Inc (SSI)
- Wisconsin Homestead Tax Credit (Schedule H)
- Wisconsin Works (W2)
- Section 8/Federal Public Housing Assistance
Households may also be eligible if a one person household makes $14,621 or less annually. For additional household members, add $5,049 for each member to determine income eligibility rate.
If you are eligible through one or more of these programs its easy to complete an application. You merely have to sign under penalty of perjury that you are on the program. No submission of proof is required.