Capturing addresses is an important design consideration for Lifeline because the consumer base moves frequently, and can live in areas with non-standard addresses. During interviews, stakeholders shared their experiences with entering Lifeline consumers’ addresses, and the consumers’ diverse needs for entering where they live.
Descriptive home addresses
Rural and Tribal customers need the flexibility to add a descriptive address or coordinates, rather than a standard address.
We don’t anticipate that customers will be allowed to enter a PO Box as their home address. However, as they do now, customers can use a PO box as their mailing address.
Considerations for homelessness
Because some Lifeline customers are experiencing homelessness, stakeholders recommended that the National Verifier be prepared with flexibility and special instructions for this population. Customers may need to use an address at a shelter, a friend’s house, or a descriptive address.
Stakeholders shared that it’s common to encounter a duplicate address error while checking Lifeline eligibility. We learned that sometimes a duplicate will appear even though the customer lives alone, because the prior tenant is still listed in our records at that address.
We also heard from stakeholders that when the system attempts to normalize an address, if an error occurs, the customer needs a specific description of the problem with the address.
In the next post, we’ll share what we’ve heard about checking customers’ participation in a qualifying program.
Tell us in the comments: what challenges and special situations have you encountered with customer addresses?