Readers often ask us the same question over and over again in a very short period of time. Right now our mailbox is full of emails from readers asking, “How do I switch from one Lifeline company to another?”
Some of them ask because they were left with no Lifeline service when Budget Wireless suddenly went out of business. Some of them ask because the rules of the Lifeline program changed back in December of 2016. And, of course, a lot of them ask because they’re just not happy with their service.
So in answer to all those questions, here’s the complete information directly from the Universal Service Administration Company (USAC) website:
Change My Company
Customers may transfer the Lifeline benefit to a new company once every sixty (60) days for telephone service, and once every 12 months for internet service.
Customers may be allowed to transfer their benefit sooner if:
- They move to a new address,
- The company no longer offers Lifeline service, or
- The company charged late fees greater than the customer’s monthly out of pocket cost for service.
How to Transfer Your Lifeline Benefit
To transfer your benefit to another company, contact a different company that offers Lifeline and ask them to transfer your Lifeline benefit to them.
The new company will need this information to process the request:
- Date of birth
- Last four digits of your Social Security number
- Phone number
- Your consent (verbal or written)
You will be required to give your consent acknowledging that once the transfer is complete, you will lose your benefit with the previous company.
You will need to acknowledge that the new company has explained that customers may not have more than one Lifeline benefit per household.
In most cases, customers will not experience an interruption in service. There are certain instances when customers may be asked to provide Proof of Identity.
So there you have it, readers. Everything you need to know about how to transfer your service from one free government cell phone company to another.
So if you need a new Lifeline company because your old one went out of business, or if you need a new Lifeline company because your current one sucks, or if you need a new Lifeline company for ANY reason, now you know how to make the change.