FCC Proposes $6 Million Fine Against TracFone for Violating Lifeline Program Rules

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The Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission), in a Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture (NAL), has proposed a fine of $6,013,000 against TracFone Wireless (TracFone) for apparently claiming Lifeline customers who were not actually eligible for the program. The Lifeline program helps low-income Americans receive affordable communications services. TracFone Wireless, a prepaid wireless provider providing Lifeline service under the SafeLink Wireless brand, apparently manipulated the eligibility information of existing subscribers to create and enroll fictitious subscribers by, for example, claiming support for multiple customers at different addresses but using the same name. The proposed fine is based upon 5,738 apparently improper Lifeline funding claims and an upward adjustment for TracFone’s egregious conduct.

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