T-Mobile, Metro by T-Mobile joins FCC’s Emergency Broadband Benefit Program

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T-Mobile and its prepaid arm, Metro by T-Mobile, have unveiled that they will be participating in the temporary Emergency Broadband Benefit Program (EBB) released by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Through this program, households that are struggling with their internet service bills during the pandemic can continue to stay connected to education, work, and healthcare services.

Enrollment to the program will open on May 12th. If you are a qualified T-Mobile, Metro by T-Mobile, Assurance Wireless, or Sprint consumer and government customer in the U.S., Puerto Rico, and U.S. Virgin Islands, you can be eligible for up to $50 discount per household on service each month on qualified plans throughout the program. For tribal lands, the discount goes up to $75.

According to the announcement, eligible consumers can obtain EBB program service from any of the participating providers. They can also transfer their EBB benefit to another provider at any time. 

Once the program ends, you have the choice to continue service. However, you will be subject to the undiscounted rates and general terms and conditions of the provider. You can read more about the program here and here

 

Source: T-Mobile

 

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  • Shaun Michalak

    I just read this, and it is kind of crazy about the numbers.. First they say to qualify, all you need to be is at or below the 135% poverty level, basically making you eligible for some kind of welfare.. but then go on to say as another option, you have had to have an income loss and make less then 99,000 single, or 198,000 for a couple.. I am failing to see how someone currently making $50 hr is hard up to where they would even need this kind of help.. To me, that is just crazy..

    • marque2

      ‘I am failing to see how someone currently making $50 hr is hard up to where they would even need this kind of help..’

      Inflation is getting rough!

      • Shaun Michalak

        I figured it out, and I think it came up to just under $48 hr (I just rounded off in the first comment) for a full time worker, for a single person.. I just thought, WOW, the extremes, and just how crazy it is.. I could have seen them saying under $30k for a single person, but 99k, just because you lost some income.. Even at 80k, you should not need this kind of help.. But then to think, it is also available to homes at 135% the poverty rate.. For 2 people in the home, that comes up to about $11 hr for a full time worker..

        So no income loss, you need to make under $11 hr for 2 people, but major income loss, you only need to be under $47 hr for one person.. Just how crazy is that.. and who is the idiot that ever came up with that $47 hr person needs help paying their cell bill??

        • marque2

          The higher income is a cap on people who lost their job. I agree it is a bit high, if you lose your job for 3 months and the family still is making 198K in the year, but be assured that most programs you can qualify if you merely lose your job. e.g. you are on track to make a million and lose the job, if your monthly income is unemployment benefits level, you can apply for energy discounts, WIC, and use WIC for reduced lunch program, etc. Interestingly, and I forgot the program, I tried to apply to some program last year because I lost my job, early in the covid mess, but since the federal government was giving $600 extra per week to unemployed, that pushed my income for a family of 4 over the limit. I’ll have to try to think of the program.

        • Shaun Michalak

          This was before COVID, but years ago, my dad lost his job.. The company went out of business, so it was due to no fault of his own. Because of it, he lost his insurance.. When working, he was not making much over minimum wage, so we are talking maybe $8hr.. So you can imagine what he was getting on unemployment.. he applied for medicaid, just for the health insurance to help pay for the meds that he was on.. The sad part is, the meds were for major things, not something like a slightly elevated cholesterol. They asked if he had a car.. He said yes.. It was a 4 door ford sedan that was over 10 years old. Not worth much.. They refused to give him any help because he owned a car.. Could you imagine telling someone to go without their insulin because they own a car with less then $2k?? It was not insulin, but on the same level..

          These days, I am on SSD.. I used to work when I could.. Got my CIS networks degree, have an inspection license, etc.. and used both of them when I could.. But a major car accident put that all to a halt.. I will just say this about it.. When the other person is driving 85 in a 35 zone, it is not your fault.. I started out at just something like $800 a month.. Filed for just foodstamps.. They refused me because I live with my mom.. They said that if I needed help, that it was my moms job to make sure I was fed.. Now if I was 16, I could see that.. But not someone in their 20’s, or 30’s, or 40’s, etc..

        • marque2

          Yeah that happens with food stamps and medicare, you can’t have savings over $3000 including the car. (This is from a few years ago the rates may he higher) There is an exemption where they don’t care about property if you have children under a certain age, but you have to be like a lawyer to get it that way and you need to take a lecture series on family planning.

          One of my goals in life was to get on food stamps – just for a bit, to see if I could do it and how hard it would be, and had an opportunity when I was unemployed a few years back, by the time I worked the system to the point where they were willing to let me do the fertility course, I got a new job (about 3 months) and being an engineer I know how to work through systems like this, ordinary folk don’t have much chance.

          One of the crazy things with the $3000 limit, if I had to keep that little in the bank, I couldn’t pay a mortgage or even rent. I suspect a lot of mattress money with people on these programs because you can’t keep it in the bank.

        • Shaun Michalak

          That is so true.. The things that I think that make it really bad are.. For one, a vehicle.. Most vehicles that are worth less then that are either in bad shape, or are ones that are really old, have really high mileage, and can not be considered reliable.. Look at me for example.. I am in a wheel chair.. If I had to get a van that was handicapped accessible, that would be worth over $3000. So now I am screwed for just wanting a vehicle to get around in..

          Like to have a little in the bank in case something happens.. Say you have to move to another apartment if you rent.. You have to have first months rent and security deposit to get the new place.. But when your car is worth $2,500, that does not leave you any room for keeping that $1,500 in the bank you need to get another apartment..

          I am not saying that you need to be able to have $10k in the bank and with stuff, but at least give them enough room to have a reliable car, and a little in the bank in case it breaks down..

        • marque2

          Yeah, I would need more than $2000 in the bank a so so 2bdrm apt is $1800 around where I live.

          So in order to live somewhere with those restrictions you need state sponsored housing and it is hard to get a job with such a low savings and horrible car you are stuck.
          Get that job and you almost instantly lose assistance and might get thrown out of the apartment. The whole system is designed to keep you on welfare style programs and make it difficult to escape.

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