Tablets are becoming indispensable in most homes, schools, and offices today. Their numerous capabilities and features make them suitable for people of all ages. While some people buy them for purely entertainment purposes, others use them for more important activities such as communicating and studying.
These devices are more costly when compared to regular smartphones making them inaccessible to many households. However, you stand a chance to get a free tablet if you’re a beneficiary of the Medicaid program.
This is possible because the Federal Government developed assistance programs to help people from low-income households keep up with emerging technological trends. Participating in the Medicaid program proves that you are economically deprived, automatically making you eligible for a free tablet. This post provides an in-depth guide on how to get free tablets with Medicaid.
The Medicaid Program
Medicaid is a federal and state-run program that offers healthcare services to low-income individuals for free or at a low cost. This program is also popularly called ‘Medical Assistance’ or ‘Health Assistance’. It helps relieve millions of Americans who cannot pay for health insurance.
Additionally, it helps to lighten the burden of paying medical bills for disadvantaged groups such as the disabled, elderly, and pregnant women. Like every other government-aided program, the Medicaid program has a set of guidelines that applicants must follow to be approved.
The Medicaid program is fully financed by the Federal Government and administered by service providers who are paid through the program. This enables many service providers to offer free tablets to those participating.
Some states usually run the program on their own. In New Jersey, medical assistance is referred to as Tenncare, Washington; Apple Health, California; Medi-Cal, and Maine; MaineCare.
Can You Get a Free Tablet with Medicaid
You can get a free tablet with Medicaid if you participate in the Lifeline and Affordable Connectivity Programs. These two programs were formed by the Federal Communication Commission to provide telecommunication and broadband services to financially incapable citizens.
They also fund various telecommunication providers to enable them to offer free devices such as tablets, smartphones, and computers. The Lifeline and ACP programs make it mandatory for beneficiaries to enrol in government assistance programs such as Medicaid to get a free tablet from participating providers.
How Can You Qualify for Free Tablets with Medicaid
Many people apply for free tablets with Medicaid from service providers daily. However, it is not possible to provide them all with these devices. Only people who have an active membership in a government assistance program can get free devices.
As mentioned above, participation in the Medicaid program automatically qualifies you for a free tablet. You must satisfy all the qualification guidelines to benefit from the Medicaid program. These guidelines differ from state to state, but the following rules are common for all of them.
The Medicaid program dictates that you should be a low-income earner to reap benefits. Specifically, your total income or that of your household should be less than 135% of the Poverty Threshold put in place by the Federal Government. This shows that you’re in dire need of financial assistance.
Apart from satisfying the income guidelines, you need to have US Citizenship or be an eligible non-citizen, for instance, green card holders and other permanent non-residents. Additionally, you have to reside in the state from where you’re making your application.
Meeting the qualification guidelines is not enough to get you a free tablet with Medicaid; you will still need to provide the following supporting documents.
- Low-income earners must provide official documents showing their income is below the required threshold for the state where they reside.
- Disabled persons will need to provide documents from known medical practitioners showing the extent of their disability.
- Seniors applying for the program will be required to present official documents verifying their age, such as Identification Documents.
- Children who have attained a certain age and want to receive Medicare benefits and a free tablet have to prove their age with the help of their parents or guardian.
How to Apply for the Medicaid Program
If you fulfil all the guidelines above, applying for the Medicaid program should be straightforward. You can use two distinct channels: the Health Insurance Marketplace and the Medicaid agency in your state. Most people prefer the former. Here’s how you can proceed if you also settle for this method:
- Confirm if you’re qualified for the Medicaid program. You can do this by calling Medicaid representatives at 1-800-362-1504. Alternatively, you can go to a Medicaid office closest to you.
- Create a Health Insurance Marketplace account from their official website.
- Log into your account and complete an application form. You will be required to provide details and attach documents proving your eligibility here.
- Finish the application procedure and wait for a reply. You will be notified through mail once your application is accepted or denied. If the application is approved, you can pick up your Medicaid card from the office closest to you. You can also choose to have it delivered to your house.
Application Process for Free Tablets with Medicaid
How can you apply for a free tablet with Medicaid? The whole procedure is outlined below:
- Step 1: Scroll through the list of Lifeline or ACP providers available in your state and choose the one that suits you best. Ensure that they have the Medicaid program.
- Step 2: Go to their website and begin the application process. You might need to sign up first before providing the required details. On top of that, you have to attach your eligibility documents before submitting your application.
- Step 3: All applications are vetted before the service providers can get back to you. If your application is successful, your tablet will be mailed to you. In other instances, the provider will give you a voucher instead. You can use this voucher to get a free tablet at any of their outlets.
- Step 4: Once you get your free tablet, you can pick a plan from your provider and start enjoying their wireless services.
The Best Providers of Free Tablets with Medicaid
The number of Lifeline and ACP providers who offer free tablets with Medicaid usually changes periodically. Only a few companies in the country provide free tablets to eligible customers. They include:
Q Link Wireless
QLink Wireless is well-known for providing exemplary Lifeline and ACP services to qualified customers. If you’re currently receiving benefits from the Medicaid program, you can be eligible for a one-time discount to help you purchase a tablet.
You will need to pay only $10.01 to get this discount which amounts to $100. QLink Wireless will not give you the tablet you want, but whatever they have available. On the upside, they will also offer unlimited minutes, data, and text.
All applicants must be enrolled in the QLink Wireless ACP program to be considered for free tablets with Medicaid. Below is the application process for a free tablet with Medicaid from QLink Wireless:
- Sign up at QLink Wireless by inputting your email address and zip code and selecting ‘Get It Now’.
- Complete an application form and attach all the necessary documents.
- Select a plan from the options QLink Wireless gives you and send your application.
- QLink Wireless will mail you the free tablet and start applying the discount to your monthly bills.
StandUp Wireless is one of the most-trusted providers of free tablets through the ACP program. It offers eligible customers as much as $100 discounts which they can use when purchasing certain tablets. However, the Federal Communication Commission dictates that every program beneficiary must pay a minimum fee of $10.01.
Qualified customers get 8-inch tablets from Standup Wireless. These tablets are very reliable as they can access the StandUp Wireless network. However, the only way you can text or call using this tablet is through applications, e.g., WhatsApp or Skype.
StandUp Wireless tablets come with free unlimited text, minutes, and 10 GB of data when you subscribe to their Lifeline plus ACP plan. Presenting a Medicaid card is enough proof to get your application for a free tablet started. These is the procedure to follow to apply:
- Visit the official website for StandUp Wireless.
- Input your email address and ZIP Code and click ‘Begin Application’. You will be prompted to enter your details and documents showing that you’re ACP-eligible.
- Once you’re through, pick your desired plan.
- StandUp Wireless will review your application, and if you meet all the criteria, they will mail you the free tablet. You will also get a monthly discount on your phone bill.
Restrictions of Free Tablets with Medicaid
The free tablets with Medicaid program benefit people who need tablets but can’t afford one. However, it comes with a few limitations, including:
- You cannot choose the type and make of tablet you will receive because assistance programs only offer what is available.
- The total time it takes for the tablet to reach you highly depends on how far from the provider you’re located and the availability of tablets at that time. The further you stay, the longer it might take, and vice versa. You will have to be patient.
- Service providers don’t offer the tablet completely free of charge as the FCC mandates them to charge a minimum fee of $10.01
- Every household is only limited to one free tablet. Anything above that is considered a violation of the ACP program’s regulation.
- The ACP provides a $100 discount for purchasing tablets only once.
Benefits of the Free Tablets with Medicaid
There are many reasons why you should consider getting free tablets with Medicaid, including:
- They are the perfect communication tool for everyone. You can easily use them to chat with your loved ones through video calls, texts, or normal calls.
- Students can conveniently use them to conduct research online, attend classes, and read documents from anywhere.
- They can be used for entertainment thanks to their massive screens and excellent clarity. People can use them to watch videos on YouTube, listen to music, and even browse the internet.
- Tablets contain vital apps that can be used by older people to monitor their health and keep fit.
- This device keeps you connected to the outside world, so you don’t miss out on recent news or valuable opportunities.
The Bottom Line
The price of essential digital devices such as tablets, laptops, and smartphones is increasing daily. This is because the technology deployed when manufacturing them is also improving immensely. Thankfully, free tablets with Medicaid have stepped in to save the situation.
They have helped people who wouldn’t otherwise afford them to keep up with the rapid technological advancement. If you don’t know how to get one, this article has provided all the details. Hopefully, you will find it useful.
People Also Ask
Yes, you can if you apply for one from free government tablet providers. However, you have to qualify for the Affordable Connectivity Program first.
You can get a free tablet from many other avenues if you don’t qualify for Medicaid, for example, non-profit organizations, giveaways, charities, and social media.
There are other benefits besides a free tablet that you can get from ACP providers. Some include a monthly $30 discount on your phone bill, unlimited texts, calls, and data.
There is a wide range of tablets that you can get for free when you qualify for the Medicaid program. Even though the tablets come from top manufacturers like Samsung, Microsoft, Google, ZTE, Asus, and Amazon, most are refurbished. However, most of them are still reliable.