Lifeline Program

Lifeline is a federal program that provides a monthly discount on phone or internet service to eligible households.


One Benefit Per Household

Only one Lifeline benefit is allowed per household. It can be either:

  • Phone service (wireless or landline) OR
  • Internet service (home or mobile data)

Your household includes everyone who lives with you and shares in the household income and expenses. This includes children, adults, relatives and people not related to you.


Eligibility for Lifeline

You are eligible if you:

  1. Live in Vermont
  2. Get your phone or internet service through a participating provider AND
  3. Qualify in one of the following ways:
    1. Based on Public Benefits:
      Someone in your household gets at least one of these benefits:  
  • 3SquaresVT
  • Federal Public Housing Assistance
  • Fuel Assistance1
  • Medicaid
  • Reach Up1
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
  • Veterans Pension/Survivors Pension
  1. Based on Household Income:
  • You’re 65 or older on June 15, 2017 and your 2016 household income was less than $28,035
  • You’re under 65 on June 15, 2017 and your 2016 household income was less than $24,030

Participating Providers

Below is a list of companies that currently offer Lifeline to Vermonters. To learn about the discounts available to you, call the providers listed below or visit their websites.

Company/Website

Customer Service

Burlington Telecom 802-540-0007
FairPoint Communications 1-866-984-2001
Franklin Telephone Co. Inc. 802-285-9911
Life Wireless (Telrite) 1-888-543-3620
OTT Communications (Shoreham Tel) 1-866-746-3873
Q Link Wireless 1-855-754-6543
TDS Telecom (Ludlow, Northfield, Perkinsville, & Proctorsville) 1-866-571-6662
Topsham Telephone 802-439-5325
Vermont Telephone (VTel) 802- 885-9000
Waitsfield / Champlain Valley Telecom 1-800-496-3391

If your service provider is not listed, call them to ask whether they offer any similar discount to their customers.


The Application Process

  1. Complete the 2017 Lifeline Application Form
  2. Sign and date the application at the bottom of page 4.
  3. If you’re already getting the service you are applying to get the discount on, include a copy of your most recent bill. Make sure the information you provide on the application matches what’s on the bill.
  4. Enclose copies of any required supporting documents (as listed on the application form).
  5. Mail your application to:

The Lifeline Program - ADPC
280 State Drive
Waterbury, VT 05671-1500

  1. If we determine you’re eligible, we’ll notify your service provider.
  2. The provider will apply the Lifeline discount to your bill. If it’s your first time applying, it may take up to three months for the discount to begin.

Important Notes

  • Don’t send originals; they won’t be returned.
  • Lifeline benefits may be denied or delayed if you don’t fully complete  & sign the application.
  • You will be required to re-certify your continued eligibility every year to keep getting the discount.
  • Do not send your application to the Tax Department.

Questions/Help Applying

  • Call the Economic Services Division at 1-800-775-0507
  • If you’re age 60 or older, you can also call the Senior Helpline at 1-800-642-5119

Changing Service Providers

Once you start getting Lifeline, you may only transfer the benefit to a new provider:

  • Once every 60 days for phone service
  • Once every 12 months for internet service

You may be allowed to change providers sooner if:

  • You move
  • Your provider no longer offers Lifeline or is in violation of the program rules
  • The provider charges late fees greater than your monthly out-of-pocket costs

  1. As of November 1, 2017, you'll no longer be able to use Fuel Assistance or Reach Up to prove your eligibility for Lifeline.