The State of Illinois administers Lifeline, a federal program, to provide telephone access to qualified low-income individuals receiving certain public assistance benefits. The Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) is authorized by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to designate eligible telecommunications carriers (ETCs) to offer Lifeline services in Illinois. Pursuant to FCC requirements, ETCs must verify Lifeline applicants' and participants' receipt of public assistance benefits.
To accomplish this, ETCs may initiate a verification inquiry of the Illinois Department of Human Services (DHS) public assistance recipient data using the Lifeline Eligibility Verification System (LEVS) to determine receipt of certain public assistance benefits. To do so, the ETC must have an agreement with DHS and have provided certain user information. Links to these documents and more are below.