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Should I apply for a free government cell phone plan?

If you're struggling to make ends meet in today's rough economy, then you may be eligible to participate in the government's free cell phone program. The Lifeline Program was established in 1985 to provide free or discounted phone service to low-income Americans. This government cell phone program allows people who are disadvantaged to continue to seek employment while arranging care for themselves and their families. Having a phone is crucial for functioning in today's society, but people who live in poverty can't afford the burden of a cellular phone bill.

The Lifeline Program helps by providing free phone service for one year. Federal

rules limit participants to one free government cell phone per household. Participants may choose to have either a wired or wireless phone line covered by the government; also, phone plans are limited to just 250 minutes per month, and text messages consume these minutes at a greater rate. The cellular phone service available through the Lifeline program is prepaid wireless service, meaning there are no contracts or credit checks needed for people to use the program.

Take this quiz to learn more about whether you should consider enrolling in the Lifeline Program. If you are at or below the poverty line, you may qualify for this valuable government service that has helped scores of people get back on their feet.

Have you ever had a government cell phone?
Does someone in your household currently have a government cell phone?
Do you currently have a wireless phone?
Is your income at or below the poverty line?
What kind of access do you currently have to a cell phone or landline phone?
Do you receive food stamps, federal housing assistance or supplemental security income?
Is your child eligible for the National School Lunch Program's Free Lunch Program?
Does your household meet the criteria to be eligible for Head Start?