Universal service is based on the principle that all Americans should have access to a baseline level of telecommunications service and further the public interest of keeping all Americans connected. This principle is the cornerstone of the Communications Act of 1934, which established universal service in legislation and also created the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Since that time, universal service policies have helped make telephone service (and later, broadband access) widely available throughout the U.S., even in rural areas.
USAC is an independent, not-for-profit corporation designated by the FCC as the administrator of the Universal Service Fund.
Click here for a list of FAQS.
The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) is a U.S. government program run by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) program to help low-income households pay for internet service and connected devices like a laptop or tablet.
You are likely eligible if your household’s income is below 200% of the Federal Poverty Line, or if you or someone you live with currently receives a government benefit like SNAP, Medicaid, SSI, WIC, Pell Grant, or Free and Reduced-Price Lunch.
If your household is eligible, you could receive:
- Up to a $30/month discount on your internet service
- Up to a $75/month discount if your household is on qualifying Tribal lands
- A one-time discount of up to $100 for a laptop, tablet, or desktop computer (with a co-payment of more than $10 but less than $50)
- A low cost service plan that may be fully covered through the ACP*
* Through a separate non-FCC initiative, additional no cost plans may be available to Affordable Connectivity Program enrollees. To learn more please visit GetInternet.gov. Provision of a link to this initiative does not imply FCC endorsement of any particular participating provider.
Only one monthly service discount and one device discount is allowed per household. To receive the connected device discount, consumers need to enroll in the ACP with a participating provider that offers connected devices (Note: not all internet company offer device discounts.) The internet company will provide the discount to the consumer.
To receive your benefit:
- Check if You Qualify
See if your household fits into any eligible categories
- Apply for the ACP
You can apply online, by mail, or by contacting your current internet company.
- Find a Company Near You
Use our search tool to find a company that offers ACP discounts
Are you already enrolled in Lifeline? You don’t need to apply again – click here to learn more.
ACP Support Center: (877) 384-2575.
- Free or Affordable Computers
- Help Paying For Internet
Lifeline is a federal program that offers a monthly benefit of up to $9.25 towards phone or internet services for eligible subscribers (up to $34.25 for those living on Tribal lands).
A consumer can qualify for the Lifeline benefit if their income is 135% or less than the federal poverty guidelines, or if they participate in SNAP, Medicaid, or other federal programs. See the full list of qualifying factors.
Lifeline subscribers can apply their benefit to home or mobile phone service or to high-speed broadband.
- Help Paying For Internet