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Updated March 27, 2014
A1: No. There is no cost to an ETC, third party vendor, or state administrator to access NLAD. The cost to administer NLAD is included in USAC's administrative costs.
A2: The first five states are Arkansas, Maryland, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Washington.
A3: The states that have opted out of using the NLAD system are Puerto Rico, Texas, Oregon, California, and Vermont.
A4: States may opt out of NLAD if they submit a certification showing that they have a state-wide system in place to detect, eliminate, and prevent duplicate Lifeline Program claims that is at least as robust as what the FCC has planned for the national database. NLAD will not accept data from opt-out states.
A5: No. NLAD is not the same as the USAC recertification database, and USAC does not have a recertification database. In future years, USAC anticipates that it will use NLAD to provide information for the annual recertification.
A6: NLAD collects different information than our current In-depth Data Validation (IDV) process. NLAD has its own input template with more columns to collect additional subscriber information, such as last four digits of social security number and date of birth. Unless the ETC operates in a state that has opted out of NLAD, the ETC is required to submit its subscriber data to NLAD with all required fields.
A7: ETCs will be notified by a Public Notice from the FCC later this year, and ETCs must provide subscriber data within 60 days of the Public Notice for use in the NLAD System. (See para. 190 of the Lifeline Reform Order (FCC 12-11)).
A9: Yes. ETCs will still be required to submit a monthly FCC Form 497 to claim Lifeline Program support.
A10: Consumers must contact their telecommunications carrier to determine eligibility. USAC cannot help a consumer with these questions.
A11: All subscribers must be at least 18 years old.
A12: Lifeline Program eligibility is limited to one per household. If they are separate economic households, they need to complete an Independent Economic Household (IEH) form in order to receive support.
A13: The 497 Officer must create the NLAD Admin account. The 497 Officer can designate themselves or another staff member to be the NLAD Admin. The NLAD Admin manages the subscriber data and has the ability to create sub accounts that will have limited permissions and functionalities.
A14: In production, your 497 Officer will be able to create an NLAD Admin account. That NLAD Admin account will be able to create sub-accounts. You will not be "sharing accounts" but rather designating new sub-accounts to your staff or vendors. Only one API account is permitted per ETC.
A15: Your 497 Officer will be able to log into NLAD using their E-File username and password. These are the same credentials they would use to login to submit the FCC Form 497 online. If you are having trouble, first make sure you are using a supported browser (Internet Explorer 8, Internet Explorer 9, and Mozilla Firefox) and that compatibility mode is turned off in your browser. If your credentials are not working, try signing into E-File. If you are not able to log into E-File, have your FCC Form 498 General Contact reset your password. If you continue to have trouble logging in, contact NLAD Customer Support at (888) 641-8722.
A16: The 497 Officer logs into NLAD and establishes the NLAD ETC Admin account. First, they should search for the individual by email address to see if they are already in the system. If the user already exists in NLAD, their information will populate. If the user does not exist in NLAD, the 497 Officer will be able to input the individual's information and fill in the required fields under "ETC Information." The NLAD ETC Admin's information may not show up on the dashboard at first. Once the new NLAD ETC Admin logs in, creates a password, and activates their account, their information should populate for the 497 Officer.
A17: Your NLAD ETC Admin will log into NLAD and establish the subaccounts. Select the "Create NLAD Subaccount" option from the left menu. You will be able to create a subaccount by entering the email address of the user you would like to designate. You will then determine whether the subaccount will have permissions as an NLAD ETC Analyst or NLAD ETC Operations. Once you click "Submit," the subaccount will be created.
A18: An NLAD ETC Analyst account can perform subscriber transactions, query subscriber data, create and view reports, and submit resolution requests. An NLAD ETC Operations account can only query subscriber data, create and view reports, and submit resolution requests.
A19: A subaccount role cannot be edited once it has been created. To change the subaccount role for a user, the subaccount must be deactivated. The deactivation functionality is only available to the NLAD ETC Admin through the "Manage NLAD Subaccounts" option on the left menu. Once the account has been deactivated, the NLAD ETC Admin will create a new account.
A20: The ETC Admin is the same as the NLAD Admin. The two titles are interchangeable. The role is called the NLAD ETC Administrator.
A21: ETCs must submit the last four digits of the Social Security Number and the date of birth for each subscriber that is to be entered in the database (see 47 C.F.R. Section 54.404(b)(6) and 54.410(d)(2)). ETCs are required to collect the additional data for existing customers either before or during the 2012 annual recertification process, as stated in footnote 502 of the Lifeline Reform and Modernization Order. If ETCs did not collect the information at that time, they should do so immediately.
A22: No, the FCC Lifeline Reform Order requires Lifeline Program subscribers to provide the last 4 digits of the SSN or Tribal ID number. A benefit case number will cannot be accepted.
A23: In the initial load, NLAD only accepts subscriber data in a .csv batch file. Once in production, you can key the subscriber information into the system using the NLAD Access Portal.
A25: If you have nothing to add for an optional field, the field should be left blank.
A27: Yes. Benefit Qualifying Person's (BQP) fields are not required to be populated. These fields are optional. If a carrier chooses to complete any of optional information, it must also include the BQP's last name.
A28: A Tribal ID is required if the last four digits of a social security number is not provided. The Tribal ID is not related to the "Tribal Address Flag." The "Tribal Address Flag" is used when the ETC has verified that the subscriber's resident address is on Tribal land (address cannot be recognized by the US postal service).
A30: If you do not offer Link Up, you will not use of the "Tribal Benefit flag field." The Tribal Benefit Flag is not related to the Tribal ID or Tribal primary address flag.
A31: No, during the scrubbing period you must correct the subscriber records and resubmit the entire file.
A32: The transaction type should be "enroll" for the initial upload.
A33: After a state is migrated to production, carriers only need to send new transaction details. Carriers do not have to resubmit the complete universe of subscribers again.
A34: In production, you will be able to type in a subscriber's information manually through the NLAD Access Portal (NAP).
A35: Both ETCs will be notified of the transfer via email where they will be able to view a list of all transfers made.
A36: If you are updating via NAP, your previous information will be automatically populated and you will need to update only the specific fields that need to be changed. If you are updating via API, you will need to provide all of the information again.
A37: You can update one or multiple fields in one update transaction.
A38: The testing results are just for testing purposes. The intended purpose is not for USAC to act on duplicates identified when ETCs are using the test environment.
A39: For testing only, the ETC's NLAD Admin account and API account will be created by the ETC's 497 Officer. The NLAD Admin is in charge of creating the sub-account for other staff or a third-party company.
A40: Yes. During the testing process, ETCs are expected to continuously upload subscriber data, correct rejected rows, and re-submit the entire subscriber data file. Once in testing, NLAD only keeps the last file of accepted and rejected rows.
A41: NLAD's testing environment has limited resources compared to production so it is not 100 percent reliable. Try again in one hour.
A42: Once NLAD goes into production, the batch file should permit up to 256 megabytes.
A43: The first two digits of your SAC indicate which state the study area code belongs to. For example, if it starts with 22xxxx, then the SAC belongs to the state of Georgia. As each group rolls out, only submit subscribers for the state indicated by those first two digits of the SAC.
A44: This is a Microsoft Excel issue, not an NLAD issue. To keep the leading zero, add an apostrophe in front of the numbers. For example, if the SSN is 0123, add the apostrophe at the front so that it reads '0123. Save the file as a .csv (comma delimited) and upload it to NLAD. After saving the file, do not open it before uploading to NLAD, because it will revert back and drop the leading zero(s). This should solve your SSN errors caused by leading zeros.
A46: Only the apartment number, suite number, lot number, etc. should be in the field for Address Line 2. If the Address Line 1 exceeds 50 characters, then please only put the first 50 characters in that field.
A47: Apartment, suite, or lot should be included in Address Line 2.
A48: No, it will not be rejected. AMS will translate "Road" to "RD."
A49: If the appropriate proof of residential address is reviewed by the ETC for residential addresses that do not appear in the USPS database, the ETC can check the "non-deliverable rural address" flag to ensure that the record can be added to NLAD. A valid residential address is required (deliverable or not), and we understand there may be cases where an address is not recognized by the USPS database records. On an optional basis, we encourage ETCs to also provide us the mailing address (e.g. a P.O. Box) for customers that reside in a residence without USPS mail service.
A50: A primary address is required, so you will need to provide the mailing address and set the flag to "non-deliverable rural address."
A51: When an address fails, perhaps because it was undeliverable, the transaction will be rejected and a resolution ID will be created in NLAD. The ETC can recall the rejected transaction via the resolution ID and take action to resolve the address issue.
A54: The ACP, or Address Confidentiality Program, Flag is used when the subscriber is in an address protection plan (program names may vary by state). However, ETC's are still required to provide a deliverable address for mail distribution.
A55: In most cases, the subscriber is the person eligible for Lifeline Program-supported service. If the subscriber is eligible, there will be no BQP. If the subscriber is not eligible, but the subscriber is the guardian or caretaker of someone who is eligible for a Lifeline Program discount, the subscriber qualifies for Lifeline Program-supported service based on the status of the individual they are the guardian/caretaker of. The eligible individual, in this case, would be considered the BQP.
A56: USAC will consider when a consumer became a subscriber of the Lifeline Program-supported service to determine their NLAD service initiation date.
Consumers who became subscribers prior to June 1, 2012 should use the date the service provider determined that the subscriber was eligible for Lifeline Program-supported service as the service initiation date. If an ETC cannot provide that date for a consumer who was a subscriber prior to June 1, 2012, the service provider should enter the following date for that subscriber: May 31, 2012.
Consumers who became subscribers of Lifeline Program-supported service between June 1, 2012 through the end of migration (1Q 2014) or consumers who became subscribers once the database is in production (4Q 2013), should use the date the service provider determined that the subscriber was eligible for Lifeline Program-supported service.
A57: This is a field for subscribers that fall into the category of 60-day non-usage.
A60: The carrier who is the recipient of the new subscriber will initiate the transaction. Both carriers will receive a notice that the transfer was successfully completed in NLAD. Once the NLAD notice has been provided, the carrier that was providing service prior to the transfer will need to de-enroll the losing subscriber within five business days of receiving the notice from NLAD.
A61: Subscribers must contact their service provider to determine their eligible benefit transfer date.
A62: If the benefit transfer transaction passes all validation processes, the transfer applies immediately.
A63: When executing a benefit transfer transaction via NAP or the API, a completion message will be returned indicating a successful completion or rejection and reason code. Also, the NLAD Admin is able to set up emails for receiving notifications.
A64: The notifications at a minimum will include all required data included in the NLAD template. Notifications will be provided by email with a custom link to access detailed transfer information. Additionally, carriers will be able to query reports to review all benefit transfer activities in real time.
A65: This requirement is being evaluated for inclusion in NLAD. No decision has been made.
A66: A resolution request can be submitted by the ETC on behalf of the subscriber.
A68: This error message is generated because the subscriber is under the age of 18 and is therefore not eligible for participation in the program. If the subscriber is an emancipated minor, the ETC must collect documentation confirming it, such as court documents.
A69: This error message is generated because the subscriber's address was not recognized by the U.S. Postal Service's Address Matching System. Another error message with the same resolution process is "INVALID_PRIMARY_ADDRESS." In order to resolve these error messages, the ETC must collect documentation, such as current utility bills or pay stubs, confirming that the subscriber does in fact live at the address indicated.
A70: This error message is generated because the subscriber has failed the Third Party Identity Verification (TPIV). In order to resolve this error message, the ETC must collect documentation, such as pay stubs, or a driver's license to confirm the identity of the subscriber.
A72: It will be alphanumeric and up to 12 characters. For example: 320775-AEBS96
A73: After downloading the error report provided, there will be a column called "Resolution ID" and a resolution ID will be available for each error. Refer to slide 46 and 47 of NLAD Connectivity Workshop #4 for an example of what an error report will look like. The slides are located in the Lifeline Program Online Learning Library.
A74: Yes, when submitting data to NLAD, carriers will be able to indicate the IEH confirmation data from the household worksheet. From the input template, this field is "iehFlag" or column L (1 = multiple household, 0 = single household).
A75: The duplicate resolution process will occur on a predetermined schedule once a state has been migrated and is "live" in production. The final file used for migration will be used for the duplication resolution process. For Track 1 duplicates, the process will be the same as the current state-by-state IDV process. For Track 2 duplicates, USAC is waiting for FCC guidance based on the results of the Michigan Track 2 pilot program to finalize the process.
A76: Yes. As with the current IDV process, carriers will be notified prior to any letters being sent to subscribers.
A77: Duplicate customers will not be loaded in the production database, but instead will be held in a duplicate resolution database. When adding new subscribers, NLAD will query both the production and the duplicate resolution database to ensure that duplicate customers are not added. Customers that are awaiting the duplicate resolution process may continue to be claimed for support.
A78: If a mailing address is provided, the letters and postcards will be sent to the mailing address. Because the "Mailing Address" field is optional, if it is not provided, the letters and postcards will be sent to the "Primary Residential Address."
A79: No, these will not be available for ETCs. These will only be provided to the subscribers.
A80: Yes. All letters, postcards, and phone calls will be available in Spanish.
A81: Yes. Once a state is in the live production environment, if an ETC tries to enroll a subscriber that is already in NLAD, they will receive an error message indicating that the subscriber is a duplicate.
A82: Yes. The error message, "Duplicate Subscriber in Process," tells the ETC that the subscriber has been identified as a duplicate subscriber receiving two or more Lifeline program supported services and will be placed on USAC's duplicate resolution list.
A83: Yes. During the 35-day window after the letters are sent out, the subscriber will have the chance to choose their Lifeline program carrier from the carriers listed in the letter that they receive
A84: The two processes are almost identical. Both use the 35-day window for duplicate subscribers to make their carrier selection and both use the five-day window for de-enrollment. The only difference is that for the duplicate resolution process the data is sent and received through NLAD. Using NLAD as a portal for these transactions will result in faster processing.
A87: USAC randomly assigns default carriers for subscribers.
A88: Yes. At the end of the duplicate resolution process, USAC will notify carriers of the subscribers they must de-enroll.