Discounted Telephone Service Programs Updates due to COVID-19 – Updated 5/15/2020

UPDATED 05/15/2020: List of Lifeline Supported Providers: Click here to see if you qualify for a Lifeline phone, then contact one of the below approved area providers for next steps. Thank you to Michael-Hall Young and his team at the Healthcare for the Homeless Network for sharing this information.

  • Access Wireless – apply online or via mail, takes about 7-9 business days to process applications if apply online
  • Assurance – apply online or via mail, takes about 5-7 business days to process applications if you apply online
  • TerraCom Wireless – Apply via phone, takes about 3-5 business days to get phones out to clients. cell phone service only.
  • enTouch – Apply via website/mail, clients must provide phones – bring unlocked phone (no guarantee to work), get phone from trusted partner, or purchase for ~$50 from enTouch, takes 5 days to approve application & 7-10 days to ship SIM card
  • Safelink – Apply online or by phone, clients must provide unlocked phone, takes about 7-10 days to process applications (if apply online)

Low Cost Telephone Access: As social service agencies close their offices and transition to remote case management to meet Public health recommendations, access to affordable phones is more important than ever. The Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS), in conjunction with Lifeline have adopted some changes to make it easier for people to access discounted telephone service. The Coalition will update this as we gather additional information, if you have anything to add please email Jason

Lifeline: A federal program that provides discounted phone and internet service to qualifying low income households. To qualify, a household must be at or below 135% Federal Poverty Limit or be enrolled in a program such as SNAP, SSI or Medicaid. Lifeline is awarded by household not individual, and a household can qualify if they have a dependent minor child who qualifies for one of the afore mentioned programs.

Changes Related to COVID-19: The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued temporary emergency guidance making it easier for qualifying households to access this benefit. The order waives recertification and reverification requirement for the Lifeline program for 60 days. This means  clients who have been approved in the past do not need to report income again in order to be re-approved for a phone, and clients who are currently receiving services are not at risk of having their service disconnected due to failure to report their information. This order went into effect on March 17 and is in effect until Sunday June 5. Click here to fill out an online application.

To Add Minutes: The Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) can add minutes to a Lifeline phone free of charge. DSHS has streamlined this process to make it easier than ever before. Clients no longer need to request a PIN code in the mail to add minutes. Lifeline customers can simply call 1-877-501-2233, request additional minutes to their phone and follow instructions to refill minutes automatically.