If you live in the state of Kentucky and meet the eligibility criteria, you can apply for free government cell phones through either Assurance Wireless or SafeLink Wireless. These companies will ship a free cell phone to your home along with free airtime. You also have the option to purchase additional airtime if the time allotted is not enough.
Discounted Home Phone Service
Kentucky residents who opt not to participate in free cell phone program can sign up for discounted home phone services. Both the free and discounted services are made possible by the Lifeline/Link-Up government program. Since the discount will vary from service provider to service provider you should visit the Lifeline Support website to see how much each carrier in your area offers.
The Lifeline Support website is co-administered by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and Universal Services Administrative Company (USAC). Once on the website, select the state of Kentucky from the US map. You’ll see a listing of phone companies servicing the Kentucky area.
By choosing a phone company, you’ll see the amount of the monthly discount they offer. Most of the phone companies offer a discount of $13.50 per month but some, such as Brandenburg Telephone Company only offers a discount of $12.10.
If you don’t see your phone company listed on the Lifeline Support website call your phone company to find out how much of a Lifeline discount they offer.
Link-Up Installation Costs
In addition to the Lifeline benefits, you may also qualify for defrayed or reduced phone installation costs. Link-Up will pay for 50% of the phone installation costs (up to $30).
Eligibility for Kentucky Lifeline/Link-Up Services
The program was set up to help low-income households obtain and pay for phone service. Therefore, eligible participants must receive assistance from at least one of the following government programs:
- Federal Public Housing
- Food Stamps
- Supplemental Security Income
- Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program
- Temporary Assistance to Needy Families
- National School Free Lunch Program
Applying for Free or Discounted Service
To apply for the discounted service contact your phone company and request the Lifeline/Link-Up application. Once you receive it, complete and return it as soon as possible. The application process is somewhat lengthy and can take several weeks before you are approved. Once you are approved you will see the discount on your phone bill.
To sign up for free cell phone service visit either the SafeLink or Assurance Wireless website and complete their online application. Assurance Wireless also has a downloadable application that you can download, complete and mail or fax back to them.
If you have any questions regarding this status of your application whether it’s free or discounted, contact the appropriate phone company.
Please be advised that you can only apply for one Lifeline phone service time. Therefore, if you elect to participate in the free government cell phone program you may not participate in the discounted phone service or visa versa. Additionally, if you currently have a past due phone bill, you must make arrangements for paying the outstanding bill prior to applying.
Note: You must have a valid home address to apply for free government cell phones. Phones will not be shipped to temporary housing or P.O. Boxes.