Are you having difficulty making your mobile phone bill every month due to financial constraints? Are you looking for a simple phone that will allow you to interact and do basic tasks in your daily life? Then taking advantage of Obama phone should be a no-brainer. People from lower-middle-class backgrounds are likely to struggle to pay their mobile bills on a monthly basis. In order to fight poverty, Barack Obama, the former President of the United States of America, decided to distribute cell phones to people from the poorest sections of society throughout the country. But, where will you find it? Please, allow me 5 minutes to clear this topic. In this post, we’ll go over the best places to get free Obama Phone as well as how to apply to get one.
What is Obama Phone?
Poverty-stricken Americans who live in low-income families may get a monthly discount on landline and mobile service via the federal government. The Lifeline Program, sometimes referred to as “Obama Phones,” may help you reduce or eliminate your monthly phone bills. Obama phones are widely used by residents in Florida, California, and New York. On the other hand, South Dakota and Wyoming have a low number of subscribers. According to official figures, 20 Million Americans are now using government-provided Obama phone services.
Is Obama Phone Actually Free?
We are kind of afraid to use things which are totally free. And that’s why, many Americans are still confused about using this great service. Actually, throughout the procedure, there are no reasons to worry. Yes, Obama phones are completely free, and the initiative is funded by telecom operators.
Usually, telecommunications businesses contribute to the Lifeline program by charging mandatory FCC Universal Service Fees, which are often passed on to customers in the form of a higher phone bill. Moreover, it is a modest sum of money, and not all telecommunications providers pass on this charge to their consumers.
While far into the internet and wireless era, the Obama administration recognized that access to high-speed internet and cellular services is important. As a result, residents of various government programs may be eligible for a Lifeline cell phone plan, but they may only get a basic phone, rather than the latest iPhone or Galaxy, as part of their benefits.
In 2015, this program started to provide low-income people with a discount on Internet connection. Federal assistance for low-income Americans, known formally as Lifeline, gives qualified users $9.25 per month to purchase phone service.
Do I Qualify for a Free Obama Phone?
In the first case, if you’re currently engaged in a government-sponsored assistance program, you may be immediately eligible for a free government phone. Anyone currently enrolled in either of the following programs can get one:
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Federal Public Housing Assistance
- Veterans Pension and Survivor’s Benefit
- Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance
- Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations
- Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
- National School Lunch Program’s (NSLP) free lunch program
- Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
- Tribal-specific programs
Aside from federal programs, there are state-run programs that qualify for the Lifeline Assistance Program. Among them are:
- California Healthy Families Program
- Women, Infants and Children Program
- National School Lunch Program
- California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to kids
- Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
- Greater Avenues for Independence Gain
- Welfare to Work
It is necessary to prove that your income is equal to or less than 135 percent of the Federal Poverty Guidelines, if you are not participating in any of those government programs. For example, if you are the only breadwinner in your family and want to qualify for a free government phone, you must prove that your annual income is less than $12,760. Each additional family member increases your qualifying maximum by $4,480, making it simpler to get a free government phone and a low-cost federal cell phone plan.
A maximum of one Lifeline Program discount, similar to one telephone line, is allowed per household. If someone in your household already has an Obama Phone, you should discuss who will get or keep the benefit. A new set of federal poverty standards is released once a year, often at the end of January. Verify your eligibility every year to make sure you are still qualified.
Note: Hawaii and Alaska use different eligibility numbers than the rest of the country.
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How to Apply or Sign Up for Free Obama Phone?
Applying for Obama phones is not as hard as you think. Following steps can help you to understand it easily.
Getting the Obama Phone
The Lifeline Program has a list of participating company. To learn about the companies and plans in your state. Do some study on different corporations and strategies to discover the best one for you. Your phone should come with caller ID, voice mail, call waiting, and 250 monthly minutes. The amount of texts you may send and receive varies based on the plan you select.
Filling Out the Application
When you’ve decided on a service and a plan, contact them directly and request an application. You must include name, address, date of birth, and TIN (Tribal Identification Number) number or Social Security Number (Only last four digits). You’ll also have to provide evidence of your eligibility for the program. If you are eligible for Govt. Assistance you have to submit a benefit copy card and statement. If your income qualifies you, you must submit proof, which may include:
- Benefits from the Veterans Administration statement
- Benefits for retirement or a pension statement
- Benefits from unemployment or workers’ compensation statement
- A federal or tribal notification letter of General Assistance participation
- A current income statement from a job
- A Social Security statement of benefits
- A divorce decree
- A child support award
- Prior year’s state, federal, or Tribal tax return
- Other official document containing income information
Because Obama Phone initiatives are run by phone companies rather than the federal government, there is no need to contact the government to get a free phone.
Verify Your Identity
Just providing your qualifying information will be enough for the mobile operator to confirm your identity and provide you with the discount you are entitled to. If needed, the company will contact you and request further identification documents to verify your identity. Documents that the phone provider may request include:
- Driver’s license (unexpired)
- Birth certificate
- Certificate of U.S. Citizenship
- Permanent resident card (unexpired)
- Permanent resident alien card (unexpired)
- U.S. government, military, state, or Tribal issued ID (unexpired)
- Passport (unexpired)
- Prior year’s state, federal, or Tribal tax return
- Social Security card
- Certificate of Naturalization
- Military discharge documentation
- Weapons permit (unexpired)
- Documentation for the government’s assistance program (that includes proof of identity)
- Benefits statement from a qualifying program (that includes proof of identity)
- Benefits Statement for Unemployment or Worker’s Compensation
Get Your Discount
Once your application has been accepted, the employer will enroll you in the program on your behalf. Similarly, if they are giving you a cellphone, your advantages will begin as soon as you have the phone in your possession. If you’re upgrading an existing phone, check with your provider to see when the discount will kick in. If you fulfil the criteria, you have 90 days to select a phone or internet provider and sign up. You may also request for Lifeline benefit to a service that you are currently receiving from another provider.
Managing Your Service
Management is the most important element of this process. It was intended to put mobile phones in the hands of just the poorest Americans who couldn’t afford them. So, in order to utilize it in the long run, you must keep it in good condition.
Keep Using Your Phone
Once you have received your phone, you must use it in order to remain in the program. If you don’t use your smartphone at least once in every 60 days, the provider will send you a notification. That notification will re-enable you to use your phone for 30 days and after that you will lose your discount. Keep in mind that the purpose of the program is to assist individuals who need phones in order to function.
Change Your Company
If you feel that a different plan is preferable, you can alter the provider that provides you with the Obama Phone discount. Make contact with the new employer and request a transfer. You may only transfer once every 60 days, and only once every 180 days (about 2 months). This is not something you should do on a regular basis, and if you do, you’ll be tied to your business for at least that period.
Companies may ask you to give particular information that you’ve given already. You’ll also need to provide verbal or written permission acknowledging that you’ll lose your previous employer’s benefits. Also, you may not be eligible for more than one benefit per family under the new agreement.
Every year, you’ll get a notification informing you that you must recertify your eligibility. This notification will contain instructions as well as a deadline for recertifying your membership in the organization. Typically, this involves verifying your ongoing low income or enrolling in a government assistance program. If you don’t recertify, you have a risk of losing a discount, as well as free minutes.
Inform the phone provider if you are no longer eligible for service. The discount may be cancelled if you no longer get support from the government assistance programs, or if your income has gone above the limit. If your qualifying status changes you must report the required adjustments to your phone provider within 30 days, including termination of the discount program.
This also applies to anybody else in your family who receives an Obama Phone because of your purchase. If this happens, your prior subscription should be canceled since you are only allowed one discount per family.
Replacing a Lost or Stolen Obama Phone
Lost or stolen phones are not automatically replaced for free. The company’s policies will decide it. In that case, you have to consult with your service provider. A consistent replacement policy for Lifeline phones does not exist. For replacements, each cellular phone provider has its own process. If a provider doesn’t replace your lost or stolen phone at no cost due to a reason, you can buy another suitable phone from your service provider or retailer. Remember replacing phones is quite cheap. Follow below steps to replace a free government phone that has been lost or stolen.
- Contact your service provider
- Report your phone as lost or stolen
- Request that your service be shut off
- Choose a new mobile phone.
Related Article: Factors in Boost Mobile – That Protects Lost or Stolen Phone
Where Can I Get Obama Phone for Free?
You may be eligible for free mobile phones and low-cost cell phone plans as a result of the government’s Lifeline Assistance program. It is a simple job for them to serve eligible low-income customers with free monthly data, unlimited texting, and free monthly minutes. And, they’ll give you a free phone. The Lifeline Assistance program doesn’t include any big mobile phone services or the latest iPhone devices, but it doesn’t rule out the possibility of getting a good phone on a stable network. These service providers makes it simple to get a free Obama phone.
- Assurance Wireless
- Assist Wireless
- Cintex Wireless
- Copper Valley Wireless
- Easy Wireless
- FeelSafe Wireless
- enTouch Wireless
- NewPhone Wireless
- Q Link
- Safelink Wireless
- StandUp Wireless
- Infiniti Mobile
- Terracom Wireless
- Life Wireless
- Tag Mobile
- Tempo Communications
- SafetyNet Wireless
- Sprocket Wireless
15 Best Phones by Obama Phone Companies
You won’t know what type of phone you’ll get until you’ve gone through the approval process. But most of the Lifeline Assistance-eligible providers do a good job of providing a diverse selection of phones after you’ve been approved. Unfortunately, you won’t get your hands on the iPhone 13, Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3, or any other new smart phones from these services. However, there are still plenty of cell phones available at very low price, even for free. Most of the companies have made their cell phone line-up available to the public in order to give you an idea of what to anticipate. Here are some ordinary models you’ll get.
- Coolpad Illumina
- Coolpad Legacy
- Alcatel Dawn
- Kyocera Hydro Reach
- ZTE Prestige 2
- ZTE 233
- Alcatel MyFlip
- LG Classic
- LG Stylo 4
- Samsung Galaxy S7
- Blu Advance
- Tracfone Galaxy J3
- NUU Mobile A5L
- LG Electronics K30
- iPhone 7
Is It a Decent Program for Needy Americans?
Surely, the Obama phone program is a good support for needy Americans, especially for Individuals and households who have no capacity to afford new era smartphone service without being assisted. This is a reliable program that helps you in need. If needy Americans have free phones, they will be able to reach potential employers and, as a result, increase their chances of enhancing their income levels. Aside, they can easily contact medical practitioners, which results in reducing medical costs and improving the quality of health. Finally, participants can stay connected with their family members.
Frequently Asked Questions
Under California’s Lifeline Program, each qualified resident can get a free government phone. Moreover, they will get unlimited calls, texts, and unlimited voice calls with 6GB of high speed 3G data/mo.
Yes, you can still get an Obama phone from famous providers such as ReachOut Wireless, Assurance Wireless, Safelink Wireless etc.. But, they are not a nearby source of Obama phones.
Regarding getting a free cell phone in California, you can contact them directly by calling 877-247-7799. Household income, Participation, Head Start Income Eligible Proof reports are mandatory to get this service.
Lifeline is a well-known free cell phone program that offers free cell phones to qualified customers. First participate in Medicaid, SNAP programs to qualify for this benefit.
Yes, Safelink phones are still free. But, you need to qualify the Safelink Wireless Lifeline Program to enjoy a free cell phone.
If you income 135% or less than Federal Poverty Guidelines, you can enter the Lifeline Program.
Currently, Lifeline is using T-Mobile’s network in selected states.
Yes, you can use your own phone with Obama’s free phone program. Few reasons to know why you should use your own phone.
– Already have a phone
– Some plans requires new phone, but existing phone can ok with this program
– Obama phone has lack features compared to your own phones
– Exciting offers if you use own phone
There are some good phones I see in the Obama phone program such as, Apple iPhone 7, iPhone 8, iPhone SE, iPhone XR, Samsung Galaxy S9, Samsung Galaxy S10, Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G, Samsung Galaxy Note 10. You can pick one of them.
Call to Customer Care at 888-321-5880. Report a complaint about your phone being stolen or lost. Put Assurance Wireless phone number and email address to get a replacement Obama phone.
You can upgrade the Obama phone by choosing the BYOP (Bring Your Own Phone) feature. This program can bring your own phone.
Ultimately, Obama phones are accomplishing the objectives for which they were created. Customers on a tight budget should use it to access essential health care services, job interviews, emergency services, government agencies, and keep in touch with family and friends. I hope that this post about the best places to get free Obama phone will help you to get one. As a sensible customer, you should compare the benefits and drawbacks of each provider in your region to choose a plan that suits your needs. Stay connected with Obama phones!