Does the government really offer free tablets? Are free government tablets available in Florida? If so, where can I sign up? Free government tablets are indeed an exciting topic and many U.S. citizens, including Florida residents, want to know everything there is to know about this topic and most importantly how to get such a device. If you are one of them, you have come to the right place, as we are about to dive deep into free government tablets in Florida.
Does the Government Offer Free Tablets and Why?
You are probably already familiar with the Lifeline assistance program. After all, the program has been around since the 1980s and has provided many discounts on phone and wireless services and mobile phones for qualifying customers throughout the country.
However, you may be less familiar with the new government assistance program – the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). This program was first launched as the temporary Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) during the pandemic but has soon been modified and extended, launching the new ACP program. This program offers discounts on monthly internet services and internet-connected devices, such as tablets, laptops, or desktop computers. Eligible subscribers can get a discount of up to $30 (or $75 on recognized Tribal lands) on monthly internet or wireless services and a one-time discount of up to $100 on a connected device.
The ACP offer depends on each provider and while all ACP providers offer service discounts, only the most generous companies offer device discounts. From the ones that do, most of them offer free government tablets. However, it is important to note that ‘free government tablets’ are not completely free of charge, as based on government rules, the customer must pay a mandatory co-pay of more than $10 and less than $50 to obtain the device.
Can I Get a Free Government Tablet in Florida?
ACP is the new permanent government assistance program and it is available in all U.S. states and territories, including Florida.
As such, the answer is absolutely yes! You can get a free government tablet in Florida. However, before you do, you must make sure that you meet the state’s eligibility criteria for the program and then apply. Luckily, we will break down the exact steps in detail in the following sections.
What is the Process of Receiving a Free Government Tablet in Florida
To receive a free government tablet in Florida, you must be a permanent resident of Florida. Moreover, you must this simple yet unbending process:
- Begin by checking whether or not you qualify for a free government tablet in Florida by qualifying for Florida’s ACP program.
- Before you can apply you must prepare for the application process by gathering all the information and copies of the documentation that you will be required to provide in order to prove your eligibility.
- You can then enroll in the ACP program. Ž
- If approved, select an ACP company that offers free government tablets in Florida and apply for their services as well.
- Receive and enjoy your free government tablet and a discount on monthly services.
Let’s break down these steps in the following sections.
How to Qualify for a Free Government Tablet in Florida
A household is ACP-eligible if its annual income is at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. The Guidelines depend on the household size and the state.
In Florida, the threshold for a 1-member household is $29160. See the threshold for other household sizes in the table below.
Household Size Florida
For each additional person, add: $10,280
Moreover, the household also qualifies if it meets at least one of the following criteria:
- It received a Federal Pell Grant during the current award year;
- It meets the eligibility criteria for a participating provider’s existing low-income internet program;
- It participates in one of these assistance programs:
- Free and Reduced-Price School Lunch Program or School Breakfast Program, including at U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Community Eligibility Provision schools.
- Federal Housing Assistance, including:
- Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Program (Section 8 Vouchers)
- Project-Based Rental Assistance (PBRA)/Section 202/ Section 811
- Public Housing
- Affordable Housing Programs for American Indians, Alaska Natives, or Native Hawaiians
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Veterans Pension or Survivor Benefits
- Or Lifeline;
- It participates in one of these assistance programs and lives on qualifying Tribal lands
- Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance
- Tribal TANF
- Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations
- Tribal Head Start (income based)
In addition, the applicant must be at least 18 years old or an emancipated minor, the only applicant in the household, and a resident of Florida. Households residing in other states cannot apply for the ACP benefit in Florida. Instead, they can do so in their own state or territory.
What Documents Are Required to Prove Your Free Government Tablet Eligibility in Florida
During the application process, you will be asked to provide certain documents that prove your eligibility and verify the provided information. To do so, make sure to prepare clear copies of the following acceptable documents in advance.
All of the ACP eligibility criteria can be reduced to two main categories – income-based eligibility or program participation-based eligibility. As such, in order to prove that you qualify, make sure to provide some of the following documents:
To prove your income-based eligibility:
- Current income statement from your employer or a paycheck stub
- Prior year’s state, federal, or Tribal tax return
- A Social Security statement of benefits
- Veterans Administration statement of benefits
- Unemployment or Worker’s Compensation statement of benefits
- Divorce decree or child support award
- A retirement/pension statement of benefits
- Another valid official document that includes your full name and income
To prove your program participation-based eligibility:
- Benefit award letter
- Approval letter
- Statement of benefits
- Benefit verification letter
- School documentation
- Another valid official document that includes your full name, the name of the program, the name of the institution that issued the document, and an issue date within the last 12 months or a future expiration date
Moreover, you may be required to prove or verify:
- Your identity or age (with a valid official document that includes your full name and date of birth, such as a passport, a valid ID, birth certificate, driver’s license, Certificate of U.S. Citizenship or Naturalization, Permanent Resident Card or Green Card, etc.)
- Your physical address (with a valid official document that includes your full name and address, such as a valid ID, driver’s license, utility bill, mortgage or lease statement, most recent W-2 or tax return, etc.)
- Your emancipation status (with a valid official document that includes your full name and confirmation of emancipated minor status, such as a court document or certificate of emancipation)
You will be required to submit the documentation online or via mail, as such make sure to prepare clear digital or physical copies with a camera, smartphone, scanner, or copy machine.
How to Apply for a Free Government Tablet in Florida
To apply for a free government tablet in Florida, you must first apply for the national ACP program. To do so, go to https://www.affordableconnectivity.gov/ to submit an online application or print out a physical application form, which you can then send to the program’s headquarters.
To apply online, press the link above and follow the on-screen prompts to fill out the form by providing all the required information and documentation.
To apply via mail, print out an application at https://www.affordableconnectivity.gov/wp-content/uploads/ACP-Application-Form-English.pdf, add a Household Worksheet at https://www.affordableconnectivity.gov/wp-content/uploads/lifeline/images/ACP-Household-Worksheet-English.pdf, fill the forms out, and send the papers to ACP Support Center, PO Box 7081, London, KY 40742.
Once your application has been approved by the National Verifier, you will be notified. You can then proceed to find an ACP provider that offers free government tablets in Florida and contact them to have the ACP discount applied to your bill. You will also have to apply for their program.
As the first step to proceed is to find a company that offers free government tablets in Florida, let’s see which companies offer free devices in that state.
What Companies Offer Free Government Tablets in Florida
Companies that offer ACP free government tablets include:
- AirTalk Wireless
- Cintex Wireless
- Easy Wireless
- Excess Telecom
- Go Technology Management
- Maxsip Telecom
- Moolah Wireless
- My Tablet ACP
- NewPhone Wireless
- Q Link Wireless
- StandUp Wireless
From these, the companies that are written in bold also offer free government tablets in Florida.
To apply for any of those companies, simply visit their official website, find the ACP application form, and submit it. If approved, you will be notified and you will then receive the free device via mail.
What Other Companies Offer ACP Discounts in Florida
To see the entire list of ACP providers in Florida (including the ones that don’t offer free government tablets, go to https://cnm.universalservice.org/, enter your ZIP code or city and state, choose ACP, and press search. The system will then generate a list of all the ACP companies available in your area.