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AT&T ends participation in Lifeline phone discount program

Background

In March 2019, the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) approved an application by AT&T Ohio to end its participation in the federal Lifeline program. AT&T Ohio will stop providing Lifeline discounts to the majority of its landline customers on June 11, 2019.

Federal law requires that state regulatory commissions permit telephone companies to end participation in Lifeline when there are alternate providers available to customers. A PUCO staff investigation determined that wireless providers currently offering Lifeline discounts cover 99.85 percent of AT&T Ohio’s affected service territory.

Am I affected?

If you are an AT&T customer participating in the Lifeline program, you should have received a 60-day customer notice similar to this in April. AT&T Ohio serves 7,301 landline customers enrolled in the Lifeline program, according to the latest federal data.

What are my options?

AT&T Ohio will continue to provide landline telephone service to all of its current customers; however, customers wishing to continue to receive discounts through the Lifeline program will need to find another telephone provider. A list of companies offering Lifeline discounts is available online at www.lifelinesupport.org.

Affected AT&T Ohio customers that cannot find an alternative Lifeline provider are encouraged to notify the PUCO as soon as possible by Aug. 10, 2019. The PUCO will assist customers in finding an alternative Lifeline provider, and if one does not exist, AT&T Ohio will continue to provide a discount for an additional year.

If you need assistance or have questions about Lifeline changes, contact the PUCO Call Center online here or at (800) 686-7826.