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Lifeline Terms and Conditions

The Lifeline Service Program (Lifeline), sponsored by the FCC is a program designed to maintain and preserve universal service by providing a reduction in the price of basic residential exchange service to qualifying low-income customers. The Illinois Electric Cooperative’s (hereinafter, the “Cooperative”) voice lifeline plan includes unlimited local minutes-of-use within the toll-free calling area at a discount. The Cooperative’s voice lifeline plan does not include any free minutes-of-use for toll.

GENERAL

  • Lifeline is a federally funded reduction of basic local residential service. The federal credit amount provided to Lifeline subscribers will be the maximum amount authorized by the FCC.
  • Local service for Lifeline customers may not be disconnected for nonpayment of toll charges.
  • Partial payment from Lifeline customers will be applied first to local service charges and then to toll charges.
  • Lifeline customers will not be denied reestablishment of service on the basis that the customer was previously disconnected for non-payment of toll charges.
  • Lifeline will not be furnished on a Foreign Exchange service arrangement.
  • Lifeline will be provided for one (1) voice line per household.*  Verification of this requirement will be through self-certification.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

There are 2 options for eligibility for Lifeline services:

Option 1.  Applicants must provide to the Cooperative, the appropriate documents showing that he/she is currently a recipient of benefits from one of the following public assistance programs:

  • Federal Public Housing Assistance/Section 8
  • Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program
  • General Assistance
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
  • Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TAR)
  • Medicaid
  • Food Distribution Program
  • Free School Lunch Program
  • Individuals living on tribal land receiving:

Food Distribution Program

Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance

Tribally administered Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)

Head Start (tribal programs for only those meeting it’s income qualifying standard)

Tribally administered Free School Lunch Program

Option 2.  Applicants may be eligible for the Lifeline Service Program if the household annual income level is at or below 135% of the federal poverty level. Such applicant may obtain a form from the Cooperative suitable for self-certification of income level and provide the completed form to the Cooperative to begin service under the program. Proof of income is required. Acceptable documentation may include the prior year’s federal, state, or tribal tax return, or other forms of income certification. Customers should contact the Cooperative for specific details.

CERTIFICATION

The customer will certify eligibility for Lifeline Service. Recertification is required annually or at any time the qualifying criteria for the customer changes. Recipients of Lifeline Service must notify the Cooperative when they no longer qualify for Lifeline Service. Upon receipt of the notification, the Cooperative will discontinue Lifeline Service. If the Cooperative discovers that conditions exist that disqualify the recipient of Lifeline Service, local service will be billed at the full rate. The customer will be billed retroactively either to the date Lifeline Service commenced or the date the recipient no longer qualified for the service, not to exceed twelve (12) months.

*A household is defined for Lifeline purposes as any group of individuals who live together at the same address and share income and expenses.  A household is not permitted to receive Lifeline benefits from multiple providers and violation would result in de-enrollment and potential prosecution by the United States Government.