If you are enrolled to any lifeline service provider, there are a number of reasons why you would wish to switch to another lifeline provider. Maybe, you changed your address and moved to another state where your current provider doesn’t offer services, perhaps your current provider no longer offer lifeline services, maybe you no longer like your current providers customer service, you want to join another lifeline provider that offers better services or maybe you want to join another provider with better phone offers, there are a number of reasons why you would wish to switch your lifeline provider. The good news is that it’s possible to switch from one lifeline to another through a very easy process.
To switch from one lifeline provider to another however, there is a certain procedure to follow. In addition, you will be required to provide a number of relevant information before your transfer request is processed. There are also a number of limitations when switching lifeline providers. In our blogpost today, we are going to discuss in details on how to switch lifeline providers. We will also discuss considerations to keep when switching lifeline providers, restrictions involved, the best lifeline providers to consider among other important topics. Keep reading to know more!
There Are A Few Considerations To Keep In Mind When Switching Lifeline Providers
Although the government has made it possible to switch lifeline providers through a very and exciting process, there are a few factors to consider before switching your lifeline provider. While evaluating the available options, we understand that the selections can be overwhelming. To make the whole process easier for you, this section will look at the most important considerations to keep when switching lifeline providers:
- Available benefits : When switching your lifeline provider, it’s important to consider your selection’s available benefits. As you probably know, there are several lifeline service providers with each of them offering different benefits. While some providers offer free text, call and data services only, other providers include free phones in their lifeline benefits. If you are enrolled for lifeline so that you can get a free phone, you should therefore make sure that your lifeline provider of choice has free phones included in their lifeline plans.
- Network coverage : Before switching your lifeline provider, it’s also important to consider your provider’s network coverage. Since most providers have limited coverage, it’s important to make sure that your provider of choice has services in your area before you can initiate the transfer process.
- Reliability : When choosing any lifeline service provider, you are operating at the mercy of their reliability. Before choosing a lifeline service provider to switch to, it’s therefore important to checkout review online or any other platform and find out if there is any negative review about the company’s reliability.
- Customer services : Among other factors, you should also consider your company’s customer care services before initiating your program transfer. Make sure that your provider of choice has reliable customer care services that are accessible any time of the day.
Here Are The Steps To Follow When Switching Your Lifeline Provider
As we have mentioned above, the process of switching lifeline providers is very easy and straightforward. Follow these steps below and you will be good to go:
Steps 1: Request for transfer from your current lifeline provider.
For your lifeline provider transfer request to get approved, you must first initiate the transfer request to your current provider. This is even before your new provider initiates the transfer process for you. As a result, you should contact or visit your current service provider and inform them that you wish to transfer your lifeline benefits to another carrier. Since it’s in your rights to transfer your benefits, your lifeline service provider will approve your request without hindrance.
However, it’s important to note that before you request your lifeline benefits transfer, you must have received benefits from your current company for at least 60 days or 2 months. Once you qualify for the transfer, you will be required to complete a transfer form to confirm that you wish to change your current provider and select a new service provider. Please note that your current provider will continue offering you services until your transfer process is complete.
Steps 2: Reach out to your new lifeline service provider
Once you submit your transfer request to your current carrier, you should now contact or reach out to your new service provider. This is to inform that you wish to join their services. Once you reach out to your new provider, request them to transfer the benefits for you.
Here, your new service provider will ask you to provide a number of information to prove identity and eligibility. You will be required to provide your date of birth, full official name, residential address, current telephone number, and the last four digits of your SSN.
In addition, you will also be asked to provide a written or oral consent, to prove that you have your transfer request has been approved. This consent must also have an acknowledgement that the consumer will lose his/her lifeline benefits with the former company once the transfer is complete. The document should also acknowledge that the consumer is aware that he can’t have more than one lifeline benefit per household.
Besides, you will be required to submit documents with proof that you are eligible and have been a participant of lifeline. Last but not least, you should attach an official statement indicating that only one member of your household is currently receiving lifeline benefits. After submitting all the above information, your new service provider will contact your former provider to inform them about your transfer request.
Steps 3: Transfer your lifeline benefit to new service provider
Once you provide all the above information, your new service provider will now initiate a transfer transaction in NLAD on behalf of the consumer. Please note that before initiating the transfer process in NLAD, the new service provider must show proof that he has the consumer’s consent to initiate the transfer. After gaining the consumer’s consent, the provider should then login into NLAD then select the option “transfer NLAD benefit”. Enter all the required information, tap “transfer benefits” and wait for approval.
After NLAD approves your request, they will de enroll the consumer from the previous service provider and indicate that he or she has been de-enrolled because of a benefit transfer and not any other reason.
After, NLAD will enroll the subscriber to the new service provider and indicate that the consumer has been enrolled due to benefit transfer. Finally, NLAD will contact both service providers and inform them about the changes. At this stage, your former provider will also cancel or close your lifeline account with them as you start receiving benefits from your new provider. Kindly note that the process of switching lifeline provides is completely free.
Understanding The Restrictions on Switching Lifeline Providers
Yes, there are a number of restrictions that are set to guide users when switching lifeline providers. When switching your lifeline provider, you should follow the following rules:
- You, as the subscriber, must have initiated the transfer request.
- You must have used your former service provider for at least 60 days or 2 months before requesting for your lifeline benefits transfer.
- To switch lifeline providers, you must still be eligible for the lifeline program.
- There must be no other member of you household that is currently receiving lifeline benefits when switching lifeline providers.
- If you are making the transfer for the second time, you can only transfer providers after every 90 days or 3 months.
Top 19 Best Lifeline Providers List
As we prior mentioned, there are several lifeline companies with services across different states in the United States. Here are the top best providers to consider:
- Access wireless
- Air talk wireless
- Assist wireless
- American wireless
- Boost mobile
- Assistance wireless
- Cintex wireless
- Easy wireless
- Cooper valley telecom
- Entouch wireless
- Life wireless infinity wireless
- Qlink wireless
- safelink wireless
- Tag mobile
- TerraCom wireless
- Tag Mobile
- True wireless
- Infinity mobile
- New Phone wireless
The Requirements For Eligibility In Lifeline Program
Note: If you are already familiar with Lifeline program eligibility, you can skip this section.
Lifeline is a government program that was initiated to help low income households or consumers to afford communication services. Typically, you must be financially strained before qualifying for this program. To be precise, you must have an annual income that is at or below 135% of the federal poverty guideline before qualifying for lifeline program.
Besides, you are also considered eligible for lifeline program if you participate or receive benefits from any of the following programs:
- Special supplemental program for women, infants and children
- Federal public housing assistance
- Veterans pension and survivors benefit
- Supplemental nutritional assistance program
- Supplemental security income or SSI
- Bureau of Indian affairs general assistance
- Head start
- Tribal temporary assistance for needy families
- Food distribution program on Indian reservations
Supposing I change my Lifeline provider, can I still keep my old phone number?
Yes. If you are worried that you might lose your old phone number after changing your lifeline provider, then worry not. This is because several lifeline service providers allow you to port in your number from your former company after transferring your lifeline benefits. However, you must not cancel your services with the former provider before porting in your older number. This is because once you cancel your services, you will lose your phone number before you bring it to your new company.
Is it possible to lose Lifeline eligibility in any case?
Yes, although rare, losing lifeline eligibility is very possible. This ordeal can be caused by the following reasons:
- You can lose your lifeline eligibility if you violate lifeline rules by receiving several lifeline benefits at a time
- You can lose lifeline eligibility after applying for lifeline benefits with more than one lifeline provider at a time
- You can lose lifeline eligibility if your income is no longer less than 135% of the federal poverty guideline or no longer participate in any government aid program
- You can lose lifeline eligibility if another member of your household is already receiving lifeline benefits
- You can lose lifeline eligibility if you fail to use your lifeline benefits at least once in a month
Is it possible to Re-Enroll for Lifeline benefits program?
Yes, for you to continue enjoying lifeline benefits, you should re-enroll after every year. However, if you want to re-enroll for lifeline benefits before the year is complete, it’s still possible. All you need to do is talk to your service provider for instructions on how to reapply for lifeline benefits.
Supposing I qualify for the Lifeline program, how much can I save on a monthly basis?
The monthly amount to save after you qualify for lifeline program majorly depends with your service provider. However, lifeline general rule states that a lifeline eligible consumer should receive a monthly discount of up to $9.25 and up to $34.25 if you are a qualifying consumer on tribal land.
How to cancel service with previous lifeline provider?
Do you want to discontinue lifeline benefits or cancel services with your lifeline provider? You can do this through a very simple process. In fact, the process of cancelling services with your lifeline provider is free with no termination penalties. All you need to do is contact your provider’s customer support team and inform them that you wish to cancel their services. If you want to cancel your lifeline services because of poor services and dissatisfaction, you can state your complain and the provider will rectify the issue. Better still, you can transfer to another provider instead of cancelling services.