TDS Lifeline states' Application

Lifeline now is managed by the national centralized system called the National Verifier. This system determines if consumers are eligible for Lifeline credits and manages the annual Lifeline renewal process.

You can apply for Lifeline by visiting or you may print an application at same web-site by selecting your state in the drop down menu on that site and then selecting ‘use a paper form.’ Send your completed form to the address listed on the application.

If you have questions concerning how to apply or questions about a submitted application, please call the Lifeline National Verifier at 1-800-234-9473.

You can learn more about the Lifeline National Verifier by visiting and selecting “How to Use It” under the National Verifier in the left toolbar.

Please note: Because the National Verifier manages Lifeline, TDS is no longer able to accept your Lifeline application.

Once the Lifeline National Verifier approves your application, contact TDS to activate your Lifeline benefits. You will be required to provide TDS your legal name, date of birth and last four digits of your social security number to activate the Lifeline benefits.

Don’t participate in the federal criteria (i.e., SNAP, Medicaid)? No problem. You may still qualify for New York state credits

If you do not meet the FCC Lifeline Programs’ qualifications, you may still be eligible for the New York State Lifeline Program. This state program offers a service credit to be deducted from basic telephone service only for qualified applicants.

For the New York State Lifeline Program, applicants must certify they do not qualify for the FCC Lifeline Program and do receive benefits from one of the following programs:

  • Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
  • National School Lunch Program’s free hot lunch program
  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families/Safety Net

New York - State Application

If your application is accepted, the Lifeline benefits will be automatically applied to your next bill.

If you have questions concerning your application or eligibility, please contact TDS at 1-888-CALL-TDS.

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