People who have disabilities and need discounted internet service could benefit from a new program aimed to decrease monthly bills. The program offered by the federal government can help decrease an internet bill by $50 a month or $75 a month if someone lives on tribal land.
Customers who are on Medicaid or Medicare, receive SNAP benefits, or Supplemental Social Security can apply for assistance from the program. Most applications are approved as long as applicants can show that they receive these types of assistance.
Discounted Internet Service to People With Disabilities
Since those who have disabilities typically receive one or more types of assistance from the federal or state government already, then it’s easier for them to qualify for the program. This means that they can stay connected to the internet without paying a high price each month.
Customers will be able to use the internet service that they have to contact doctors and others who they need to stay in touch with without leaving home. Once the application is approved, the provider will be notified. The amount is then deducted from the monthly bill, and the provider will receive the amount deducted from the federal government.
This is truly a great program that will help people with major disabilities and help them to connect with people all over the world and share the sufferings and pain that they are going through right now in this pandemic. Now, let’s know how the program operates and what is the registration process for the same.
How does the Program work?
The Universal Service Administrative Company is overseeing the program even though the federal government put it in place. Customers need to know that the program is only available for a limited time as funds will run out.
The program started in April and has had hundreds of thousands of applicants already. Unless the program is renewed, funds will likely run out about six months after the pandemic ends or once the $3.2 billion that Congress initially approved runs out. In order to receive assistance for as long as possible, applicants should try to apply as soon as they can.
If you’re disabled in any way, you will need to register before receiving the discount. As part of the registration process, you will need to provide details about the assistance that you receive before your application is approved. You can register on the USAC website. You will then need to ask your internet provider if they are participating in the program.
While most companies like Hughesnet internet have decided to participate, there are some that have not made the decision as to whether or not they will take part.
There is a Lifeline page on the USAC website that those with disabilities can look at as well as this is another program that offers discounts for internet and phone services. This discount is one that’s permanent instead of one that will expire in the future.
The $50 discount that is offered is a part of the Emergency Broadband Benefit program that Congress passed in December. This program was designed to help low-income families needing help to pay for internet services.
Disabled customers have also been able to apply, which has been beneficial for those living on a budget and not knowing if they will be able to pay for all of their utilities.
The Final Thoughts
The federal government hopes that by offering the discount that households will be able to safely stay at home instead of venturing out in the midst of a pandemic until it’s safe to do so or until the pandemic is over. Aside from disabled customers, those who receive Pell grants or who have seen a decrease in their income can apply for the program as well.