What to Know: Internet and Phone Assistance

Low-income households are eligible for internet cost assistance through the ACP.

What to Know: Internet and Phone Assistance

In response to the accessibility issues to internet service many households experienced during the pandemic, the Federal Communications Comission created a benefit for low-income households to assist in the expense of internet access titled the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP).

Below is an overview of the program's guidelines and how to apply.

From the Federal Communications Commission (FCC):

"The (ACP) benefit provides a discount of up to $30 per month toward internet service for eligible households and up to $75 per month for households on qualifying Tribal lands.

Eligible households can also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet from participating providers if they contribute more than $10 and less than $50 toward the purchase price.

The Affordable Connectivity Program is limited to one monthly service discount and one device discount per household."

Who Qualifies?

There are three ways a household qualifies to receive the ACP benefit.

  1. If the household income is 200% or less of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. The following amounts apply for Pennsylvania:
Income Limit by Household Size

Number of People / Income Limit
1 / $27,180
2 / $36,620
3 / $46,060
4 / $55,500
5 / $64,940
6 / $74,380
7 / $83,820
8 / $93,260

For each additional person, add $9,440.

2. If the head of household, or a child or other dependent, qualifies for any of the following government assistance programs:

  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
    or SNAP for Women, Infants and Children (WIC)
  • Medicaid
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
  • Federal Public Housing Assistance
  • Veterans Pension and Survivor Benefits
  • Free or Reduced-Price School Lunch Programs
  • Recipient of Federal Pell Grant for higher education

    (There are additional ways to qualify through Tribal Assistance Programs, although no federally recognized tribal lands exist in Pennsylvania.)

3. If the household already receives a Lifeline benefit. Lifeline is a federal benefit that lowers the cost of phone and internet service that predated the ACP. Households that qualify for Lifeline automatically qualify for the ACP.

How to Apply

Note: Applicants must apply to both the ACP program and an internet service provider that participates in the program.

The federal ACP application can be filled out in one of two ways.

  1. Apply online through the national verifier of the FCC. You will be asked to create an account with an email address and password.
  2. Print a paper application (below) and mail it to:

    ACP Support Center
    PO Box 7081
    London, KY 40742

Information you will need to complete the application.
- Legal Name
- Date of Birth
- One form of identity verification:
    - Social Security Number
    - Tribal ID Number
    - Driver's License or other Government ID
    - Miltary ID
    - Passport
    - Taxpayer Identification Number
- Home Address (+ Mailing Address if different)
- Identity Verification information of child or dependent if
   qualifying through their status
- List of federal benefit programs, if you receive them
- Household Size + Income Verification (ex: paystubs, tax
   returns) if qualifying through income

Not all providers participate in the ACP. You can use this website to help find a participating provider in your area if your current provider does not offer the ACP.

If approved for the ACP through the federal application, you will receive an Application ID number. The provider will need this number along with your full legal name and residential address where service is provided to process your application.

For more information, visit the ACP website. You can also contact the ACP support line at 1-877-384-2575 seven days a week, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.