Federal Poverty Guidelines, by state, for Lifeline free government cell phones

One way to qualify for free government cell phone from Safelink Wireless, Assurance Wireless, ReachOut Wireless and any other similar companies that work with the FCC’s Lifeline and Link-Up programs, is if your household income is at or below either 135% or 150% of the poverty level set by the federal government for your state. This does not apply in some states, so ask the wireless phone company specifically if your state allows this qualification and if so, what it is.

The following are the levels from the Federal Poverty Guidelines developed by Health and Human Services (HHS). Remember, you must multiply these numbers (we did this for you in the second chart) by 135% or 150%. We’ve produced a chart that shows the levels at 135%. As far as we know, the states that are at 150% are Florida, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, Ohio, Rhode Island and Texas (get out your calculator).

Note that some states may not allow the qualification by household income.

2013 Federal Poverty Guidelines

Size of
Family Unit

48 Contiguous
States and D.C.

Alaska

Hawaii

1

$11,490

$14,350

$13,230

2

15,510

19,380

17,850

3

19,530

24,410

22,470

4

23,550

29,440

27,090

5

27,570

34,470

31,710

6

31,590

39,500

36,330

7

35,610

44,530

40,950

8

39,630

49,560

45,570

For each additional
person, add

4,020

5,030

4,620

2013 Federal Poverty Guidelines X 135%

The default multiplier against the poverty levels is 135%. We think we are accurate in saying the following states use 135%:

Here are the same numbers, multiplied by the 135% that the Lifeline program uses.

Size of
Family Unit

48 Contiguous
States and D.C.

Alaska

Hawaii

1

$15,512

$19,373

$17,861

2

20,939

26,163

24,098

3

26,366

32,954

30,335

4

31,793

39,744

36,572

5

37,220

46,535

42,809

6

42,647

53,325

49,046

7

48,074

60,116

55,283

8

53,501

66,906

61,520

For each additional
person, add

5,427

6,791

6,237

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