Lifeline Critical Information

Important Notification Regarding Recertification:

The federal government requires every Lifeline customer to recertify their eligibility each year to maintain Lifeline service.  This is an effort to eliminate and reduce fraud and abuse in the program.  If you are no longer eligible for Lifeline service, you must report this change in eligibility status to GCI within 30 days.

GCI will contact each Lifeline customer in every year to formally complete this recertification.  GCI is required by law to disconnect Lifeline service for customers who do not recertify.

It’s easy to recertify or update your eligibility. Click here to recertify online.

Program Overview

Lifeline is a government benefit program that enables qualified low-income consumers to receive discounted service on either a wireless or landline phone. However, qualifying consumers may only obtain one Lifeline benefit per “household.” You cannot transfer your Lifeline service to any other person.

For purpose of the Lifeline Program, a household is defined as “any individual or group of individuals who live together at the same address and share income and expenses as an economic unit.”  A violation of the one-per-household limitation constitutes a violation of the Federal Communications Commission’s regulations governing the Lifeline Program and will result in the customer’s de-enrollment from the program.

GCI does not charge an initial installation or activation fee. These calling plans include the required “supported services” defined in state regulation at 3 AAC 53.499(13).

Need to know if GCI Lifeline is available in your community? Check this chart. You can view the Wireless Lifeline coverage map here.

So, are you ready to sign up? Give us a call at 907.265.5400 if you are in Anchorage (1.800.800.4800 if you’re not) or visit one of our GCI stores.

Only “eligible” consumers qualify for the Lifeline benefit. Please review the following eligibility requirements to see if you qualify.

 

Eligibility

Only eligible consumers may enroll in the program. To qualify for Lifeline service, an applicant may be eligible in one of two ways:

  1. An applicant’s annual household income is at or below 135% of the applicable federal poverty guidelines for Alaska for a household of that size; or,
  2. An applicant participates and receives benefits in one of the public assistance programs that have been approved by the Federal Communications Commission or the Regulatory Commission of Alaska.

Income Eligibility

To qualify on the basis of annual household income, the applicant must provide proof of income eligibility that meets the household income criteria for Alaska as follows:

Size of Household Lifeline Eligibility Levels
1 $19,373
2 $26,163
3 $32,954
4 $39,744
5 $46,535
6 $53,325
7 $60,116
8 $66,906
For each additional person add $6,791

Source: Federal Register , Vol. 78, No. 16, January 24, 2013 pp.5182-5183

Documentation of “household” income must be provided in one of the forms below:

  • Last year’s state, federal or Tribal tax return
  • A current income statement from an employer or paycheck stub
  • A statement of benefits from the U.S. Social Security Admin.
  • A statement of benefits from the U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs
  • A retirement or pension statement of benefits
  • An unemployment or worker’s compensation statement of benefits
  • A federal or tribal notice of letter of participation in general assistance
  • A divorce decree or child support award
  • Any other official document containing income information.

If the documentation presented does not cover a full year, such as current pay stubs, the documentation must cover at least three consecutive months within the previous twelve months.

 

Program Eligibility

To qualify on the basis of program eligibility, the applicant must provide proof of participation in one of the following authorized public assistance programs:

  • Food/Health
    • Food Stamps (Alaska Quest Card)
    • Denali Kid Care
    • Medicaid
    • National School Lunch Program (NSLP) Free Lunches
    • WIC (Women, Infants and Children’s Program)
  • General Assistance
    • Alaska Adult Public Assistance (APA)
    • Alaska Temporary Assistance Program (ATAP)
    • Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) General Assistance
    • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
    • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
  • Children and Seniors
    • Child Care Assistance Program (Pass I, II and III)
    • HeadStart Program (if you qualify under income criteria)
    • State of Alaska Senior Benefits Program
    • Senior Citizen Housing Development Fund (SCHDF)
    • Veterans Administration (VA) Disability Pension
  • Housing/Home Energy
    • Federal Public Housing Assistance (Section 8)
    • Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
    • Pioneer Home Payment Assistance
    • State of Alaska Heating Assistance
    • State of Alaska Public Housing

PLEASE NOTE: Proof of program participation must be submitted with any application for Lifeline Service based on participation in one of these programs. Acceptable documentation includes: (I) current or prior year’s statement of benefits from a qualifying program; (II) a notice or letter of participation in a qualifying program; (III) program participation documents; or (IV) another official document demonstrating that the customer, one or more of the customers’ dependents or the customer’s household receives benefits from a qualifying assistance program. 

To apply for Lifeline service, customers must complete a Lifeline application form and present the required documentation discussed above. Applications are available at any of GCI’s retail stores, or prospective customers may call Customer Service at 1-800-800-4800.

MAKING A FALSE STATEMENT TO OBTAIN LIFELINE BENEFITS IS A PUNISHABLE OFFENSE.

Consumers must fully understand that if they make false statements in order to obtain Lifeline service they can be punished by fine or imprisonment or can be barred from the Lifeline Program.

LIFELINE SERVICE IS NON-TRANSFERABLE

Lifeline service cannot be transferred or conveyed to any other person. If someone else wants Lifeline service, he/she must independently apply and qualify on his/her own.