North Dakota is not the most populated state in America, yet it has a poverty rate of about 11.9%. The unemployed or low-income earners in the state are in desperate need of government assistance in so many areas of their lives. Mobile phone services are one of them. North Dakota is popular for its farming activities, but sadly, the wages in this sector are not high. Luckily for the low-income residents in this part of America, they have the chance to benefit from the government lifeline cellphone program. In this article, we’ll be discussing how you can get a free government cellphone in North Dakota.
Which Mobile Phone Companies are Part of the Free Cellphone Program in North Dakota?
Unfortunately, there aren’t many cellphone companies that give out free cellphones in this state. Nonetheless, the few that do will have to suffice for now. Below is a list of the mobile phone companies that offer free cellphones to qualified candidates in North Dakota.
These companies offer pretty much the same packages. However, you should carefully study each of their offers and choose the one that best suits your needs and unique situation.
Eligibility Criteria for Free Government Cellphones in North Dakota
You can be eligible for a free government cellphone in North Dakota by two means. Firstly, if you are a beneficiary of a lifeline assistance program in the state, you can apply for a free government cellphone. Secondly, you may be eligible based on your household annual income.
Eligibility Based on Participation in a Lifeline Assistance Program
If you participate in one or more of the lifeline assistance programs below, you are eligible to apply for a free government cellphone.
- Food Stamps/ Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Veterans Pension and Survivor’s Benefit
- Section 8/ Federal Public Housing Assistance
- Tribal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
- Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance (BIA)
- Tribal Head Start (only those households meeting its income qualifying standard)
- Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR)
Participants of any of the above-listed lifeline assistance programs are issued with a membership card, which should be provided as proof of eligibility during the application process.
Eligibility Based on Annual Household Income
The second way you can be eligible for a free government cellphone is by your household’s annual income. If it is leveled with or lower than 135% of the federal poverty guidelines in the state of North Dakota, then you are eligible to apply for a free government cellphone. Take a look at the numbers below to see if you are eligible based on household income.
Members Of Household To Eligible Annual Income Ratio
1 person : $17,226
2 people : $23,274
3 people : $29,322
4 people : $35,370
5 people : $41,418
6 people : $47,466
7 people : $53,514
8 people : $59,562
For each additional person, add $6,048
How to Apply For a Free Government Cellphone in North Dakota
If you are eligible for a free government cellphone in North Dakota, follow these steps to apply.
1. Pick Your Preferred Mobile Phone Company
You cannot apply to all the lifeline assistance mobile phone companies for a free cellphone in North Dakota. You have to choose one. There aren’t many to choose from, but you still have to pick the one that offers you the best deal. Your selection process can be made easier if you take out some time and go through each of the mobile phone company’s websites to see what they offer. After carefully studying the various voice call, SMS, and internet bundle packages they offer, you can easily make your decision.
2. Get an Application Form
When your mind is made up on which cellphone company you want to deal with, the next step would be to get an application form. You can either do this by downloading the form from their website or pick it up from a lifeline assistance support center close to you. You will be handed an application form on request.
3. Fill the Form
This is one of the most delicate stages of getting a free government cellphone in North Dakota. The application form must be filled out correctly and you must not provide false information. Wrong information, whether intended or not, could disqualify you from getting a free cellphone in the state. Among the information, you need to provide include your first and last names, date of birth, residential address, employment status, number of household members, annual household income, and participation in any of the above-mentioned lifeline assistance programs. After you have filled out all the lines and ticked all the boxes, it would be advisable to cross-check all the information you have provided to ensure there are no mistakes.
4. Attach Proof of Eligibility
Even though you claim to be eligible for a free cellphone, proof would still be required. To prove your eligibility and authenticity, you must provide relevant documents. If you are applying based on your annual household income, you would be required to produce and attach copies of your bank statements for the past year. This isn’t hard to get. You can either visit a branch of your bank and request copies or send your bank an email and have them send it to your inbox. If you are applying based on your participation in any one of the lifeline assistance programs, then your membership ID card should be attached. Only original copies are accepted. To prove your residential address is authentic, you should also attach recent copies of utility receipts.
5. Submit the Form and Wait
The last step to completing your application would be to submit the form. You can mail it to the lifeline assistance support center near you. It would take a few weeks for your application to be accepted or rejected. Hopefully, you’d get your free government cellphone.
For a state that isn’t so populous, an 11.9% poverty rate is pretty high. Hopefully, the information provided in this article will help you begin your application process and get a free government cellphone in North Dakota.