FCC Issues One-Year Waiver for Certain Lifeline Requirements

The Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) has issued a one-year waiver of the December 1, 2021 scheduled elimination of Lifeline support for voice-only service, until December 1, 2022.  In addition, the FCC has paused the scheduled increase in mobile broadband data capacity from 4.5 GB per month to 18 GB per month, until December 1, 2022.  The additional year will provide the FCC with an opportunity to evaluate the impact of changed circumstances, namely the creation of the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and new data collected regarding Lifeline usage, and to assess whether a different long-term approach is warranted.  We recommend that you review your Lifeline tariffs to determine whether any revisions are necessary to address this one-year waiver.  Please contact Robin Tuttle at [email protected] or Greg Whiteaker at [email protected] if you have any questions regarding this waiver.