The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) is a new program by the U.S. government intended to help low-income households access internet service. Eligible ACP households will receive a discount of up to $30 a month toward the cost of home broadband or a cellular plan that includes data. This benefit may only be applied toward service provided by participating providers and the amount received from this program may not exceed the cost of a household’s monthly plan.
Who Is Eligible?
To be eligible for the ACP, a household’s income must be at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines or a member of the household must meet at least one of the following criteria:
Received a Federal Pell Grant during the current award year;
Participates in one of these assistance programs: SNAP, Medicaid, Federal Public Housing Assistance, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), WIC, Veterans Pension or Survivor Benefits, or Lifeline; or
Participates in one of these assistance programs and lives on Qualifying Tribal lands: Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance, Tribal TANF, Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations, Tribal Head Start (income based).
The ACP benefit is limited to one per household, although multiple households may reside at the same address. Applicants without a permanent address may also apply.
How do you get benefits?
Lifeline participants are already eligible for enrollment in ACP. These members can choose if they would like to combine their Lifeline and ACP benefits with one provider. Otherwise, the Lifeline benefit can be used with one provider and the ACP benefit can be used with a different provider.
If your household is not participating in Lifeline, there are three options for completing the ACP application:
Online through the ACP enrollment page;
Contact your internet company and ask if they participate in the ACP.
Completing an online application may result in immediate approval.
What rights do ACP consumers have?
Bad credit will not disqualify ACP members from receiving broadband service from an approved provider. Although, a credit check may prevent you from receiving other services or equipment bundled into a package. Those that are already subscribed to a broadband plan can apply the ACP benefit toward an existing or grandfathered plan.
ACP participants have the freedom to switch providers or cancel service at any time, as they will not be liable for an early termination fee. A household may not have their service terminated by their provider for non-payment unless 90 consecutive days have passed since the bill payment was due.
ACP will replace the Emergency Broadband Benefits Program (EBB Program). Those currently enrolled in the EBB Program will receive the ACP benefit of $30 without having to take further action.
In addition, a household in need of a laptop, tablet, or desktop computer may receive a one-time discount of up to $100. Members that already received a device under the EBB program are not eligible to receive the ACP device benefit.
If you need assistance, contact the ACP Support Center by phone at (877) 384-2575 or email ACPSupport@usac.org.