What is STAP?
The Specialized Telecommunications Assistance Program (STAP) helps people who have a disability that interferes with their access to telephone networks purchase basic specialized assistive equipment or services.
STAP typically covers the cost of most phones included in our voucher categories, which are listed below.
Vouchers and Voucher Amounts
Note: Devices marked with an * may require the use of a relay service.
Amplified Cell Phone: $120
A wireless phone with volume control to adjust the loudness of the other person's voice. May have tone control. Must amplify by at least 20 dB.
Amplified Phone: $180
A phone with volume control to adjust the loudness of the other person's voice. May be cordless, include big buttons, and provide outgoing voice amplification. Must amplify by at least 40 dB. (Some models amplify by up to 50 dB.) Amplified phones may not be compatible with digital phone lines.
Anti-stuttering Device: $1,495
Provides the user with Delayed Audio Feedback (DAF) and Frequency Shifted Audio Feedback (FAF).
Artificial Larynx: $600
A device placed on the user's neck or in the mouth that produces sound when the user speaks. If an applicant is not certified as having an UMI, a voucher is issued at a lesser value.
Big Button Telephone: $90
A phone with large dialing numbers at least 1/2 square inch, backlit dialing numbers, braille numbers or slots for picture insert dialing.
Bluetooth Cell Phone: $120
A wireless phone with Bluetooth capability.
Bluetooth Compatible Phone Device: $200
A device that enables a user's hearing aid to work with a Bluetooth device.
Bluetooth Hub: $230
A device that enables a landline phone to work with a Bluetooth device.
Braille Telecommunication Device: $6,295
Same as the TTY, but the device can convert the text typed and received into braille.
Braille Two-Way Paging Device: $3,294
A braille device that may include a cell phone that allows specific cell phones to send text messages using a braille keyboard and braille display.
Cell Phone Amplifier: $100
A device that connects to a cell phone that increases the loudness of the other person's voice.
Cordless Telephone : $140
A phone without a cord so that the user is not restricted to a single location.
Hands-free Activated Phone: $550
A phone that allows the user to dial preprogrammed numbers and answer calls using a remote or soft touch or air switch. May have amplification.
Headset, Neck Loop or Cochlear Cord: $100
A phone-compatible headset that may be T-coil compatible or a cord that is T-coil compatible or works with a user's cochlear implant device. Headset and neck loop may be amplified or Bluetooth compatible.
Hearing Carry Over (HCO): $279
User types on a keyboard and hears the response on a handset. May have a display or amplifier.
Infrared Telephone: $1,395
A phone that can be operated by infrared transmitted signals.
Outgoing Voice Amplification Telephone: $150
A phone with volume control capabilities to increase the loudness of the user's voice.
Remote Controlled Telephone: $180
A phone that allows the user to dial preprogrammed numbers in sequence and answer calls using a remote. May have safety response features.
Ring Signaler: $50
A device that alerts the user of an incoming call with a light that flashes on and off as the phone rings or a device that increases the loudness of a phone ring by up to 95 dB.
SGD Eye Control Access: $7,480
A device that connects to a SGD to allow access to a SGD using eye movements.
SGD Head Pointing or Movement Control Device: $995
A device that connects to a SGD to allow access to a SGD using head or other body movements.
SGD Key Guard: $150
A protective overlay that helps prevent inadvertent key activation.
SGD Level 1: $900
A hand-held device that generates digitized or synthesized speech using pictures.
SGD Level 2: $4,000
A device that generates digitized or synthesized speech using pictures that may allow for switch access.
SGD Level 3: $7,995
A device that generates digitized or synthesized speech using pictures that allows for eye control access.
SGD Moisture Guard: $40
A protective moisture barrier for a SGD device.
SGD Mount: $1,020
A device used to secure a SGD.
SGD Phone Compatible Attachment: $310
A device that enables a SGD to receive and make calls (including cords, cables, and kits).
SGD Switch: $145
A device that connects to a SGD to allow the user to review and make selections.
SGD Switch Mount: $245
A device used to secure a SGD switch.
A phone with a speaker built into the base.
A soft touch switch or air switch that is used with the Hands-Free Activated Phone.
Tactile Ring Signaler: $160
A device that vibrates when the phone rings.
Talk Back Number Dialed Telephone: $430
A phone that vocalizes the numbers dialed. May have large numbers, volume control or Talks Back software.
A device with a keyboard and display screen that can be used to send and receive conversations with another TTY user.
*Two-way Texting Device: $649
A text messaging device with a standard keyboard that sends and receives wireless messages.
Voice Amplification System: $250
A hands-free device with volume control capabilities to increase the loudness of the user's voice. If an applicant is not certified as having an UMI, a voucher is issued at a lesser value.
*Voice Carry Over (VCO): $250
A phone that allows the user to speak into the handset and read responses on a display screen. Some have a keyboard and handset with amplification.
Voice Dialer: $219
A device that allows the user to dial preprogrammed numbers by a voice command.
How to Apply for a Voucher
To be eligible for a voucher, you must:
- Form DARS3906, Application for Specialized Telecommunications Assistance Program (STAP) or
- Form DARS3907, Application for Specialized Telecommunications Assistance Program (STAP): Speech Generating Devices
- If you are applying due to a change of disability, Form DARS3926, Change of Disability, also is required.
- Provide proof of Texas residency, as listed on the application
- Have the application certified by one of the types of professionals listed on the application.
Note: It can take up to 90 days before an application is processed.
Contracted local service providers may assist in completing and certifying applications at no cost to the applicant. For help with certification, click here.
Once your application is approved, a voucher is issued for the specified product. The voucher must be exchanged with one of the vendors registered with this program. The list can be searched by the city you live in or by the product that is listed on the voucher. Only STAP registered vendors can exchange a voucher. Not all vendors sell all equipment.
An applicant has 30 days from the date the voucher is exchanged to return the equipment for any reason.
How do I find the equipment that is right for me?
The following vendors offer a 5-year warranty on their qualifying products purchased with a STAP voucher.
Bnk Communications, LLC
Green Planet Distribution LLC
Harris Communications Inc.
Hearing Aid Express
5201 Bellaire Blvd.
Bellaire, TX 77401-3901
1712 N Frazier St., Ste. 114B
Conroe, TX 77301-1373
11888 Marsh Lane, Ste. 111
Dallas, TX 75234-8083
1102 S. Austin Ave., Ste. 106
Georgetown, TX 78626
921 FM 1960 Road W, Ste.101B
Houston, TX 77090-2529
16103 W Little York Road, Ste. F
Houston, TX 77084-6867
1247 Kingwood Drive
Kingwood, TX 77339
3330 N Galloway Ave., Ste. 322
Mesquite, TX 75150-4767
320 E Southmore Ave., Ste. 324A
Pasadena, TX 77502-1135
803 E 15th St.
Plano, TX 75074-5805
1865 Highway 6, Ste. 120
Sugarland, TX 77478-5096
HITEC Group International Inc.
1743 Quincy Ave., Ste. 143
Naperville, IL 60540-3995
Newsound Hearing Aid Centers
4017 East 7th St.
Bay City, TX 77414-4515
1369 S Main, Ste. 106
Boerne, TX 78006-2860
520 Highway 290 W
Brenham, TX 77833-5401
2100 FM 802, Ste. 2030
Brownsville, TX 78526-2864
1001 Buchanan Drive, Ste. 11
Burnet, TX 78611-2323
1515 Fannin St., Ste. A
Columbus, TX 78934-2561
1144 W Dallas St.
Conroe, TX 77301-2208
653 Everhart Rd.
Corpus Christi, TX 78411
2400 Veterans Blvd., Ste. 13
Del Rio, TX 78840-3136
1204 N Llano St., Ste. A
Fredericksburg, TX 78624-3560
6199 Central City Blvd, Ste. 122
Galveston, TX 77551-5500
3316 Williams Drive, Ste. 115
Georgetown, TX 78628
216 N Ed Carey Drive, Ste. 3
Harlingen, TX 78550-4011
709 S Main St.
Henderson, TX 75654-3946
840 N. Eldridge Parkway
Houston, TX 77079-2758
5505 FM 1960 Road W, Ste. 516
Houston, TX 77069
1006 Junction Highway, Ste. 1
Kerrville, TX 78028-2864
201 B Highway 332 W, Ste. 1300
Lake Jackson, TX 77566-4009
401 W Fairmont Parkway, Ste. E
La Porte, TX 77571-6313
709 E Calton Road, Ste. 101
Laredo , TX 78041-3664
822 N Fourth St.
Longview, TX 75601
910 N Main St.
McAllen, TX 78501-4327
1324 Commons St., Ste. 303
New Braunfels, TX 78130-3566
1201 S Jackson Road, Ste. 8
Pharr, TX 78577-6860
1020 B W Oaklawn Road
Pleasanton, TX 78064-3956
1620 FM 2218
Richmond, TX 77469-5419
1723 Cherry St., Ste. 1
Rockport, TX 78382-3345
3272 Sherwood Way
San Angelo, TX 76901-3564
7410 Broadway St.
San Antonio, TX 78209-3222
4535 Fredericksburg Road, Ste. 113
San Antonio, TX 78201
12315 Judson Road., Ste. 210
San Antonio, TX 78233-3203
3155 SE Military Dr., Ste. 101
San Antonio, TX 78223-1043
660 SW Military Drive, Ste. D
San Antonio, TX 78221-1670
11750 Wurzbach Road
San Antonio, TX 78230-2712
2108 Hunter Road, Ste. 112
San Marcos, TX 78666-5156
3729 Highway 6 South
Sugarland, TX 77478-5249
9300 Emmett F Lowry Expressway, Ste. 186
Texas City, TX 77591-2132
4223 Research Forest Drive, Ste. 400
The Woodlands, TX 77381-4398
6320 N Navarro St., Ste. B
Victoria, TX 77904
561 W Bay Area Blvd.
Webster, TX 77598-4100
UT Dallas Callier Center for Communication Disorders
STAP Questions and Answers
How do I inform you which manufacturer and model device I want on the application?
You do not need to decide on either the model or manufacturer of the device that you are requesting when you submit your application.
Vouchers are printed with a general classification of device (amplified telephone, voice-activated answering phone, etc.) with a maximum dollar amount. You are only required to select the category of device that will assist you in using a telephone from the list found in Section 2 on the application. For example, a person with a hearing impairment requires a device that amplifies the incoming volume of his or her telephone. The device type that is best suited to address the need would be an amplified telephone, or one of the other amplifying devices on the equipment selection list.
After you receive a voucher, you can exchange it with a registered vendor for the specific device that you select at that time. A list of vendors is mailed along with the voucher.
Where do I exchange my voucher?
You can find a vendor to exchange your voucher for equipment by clicking here. You can search by city or product type.
How long before an applicant's 5-year anniversary date can a person reapply?
Applicants may apply up to 6 months before their anniversary date. Applicants who apply between 3 months to 6 months before their anniversary dates will receive a letter that states when their vouchers will be printed. Applicants who apply 3 months or less before their anniversary dates will not receive a letter from DHHS. After the applicant's anniversary date has passed, a voucher will be issued.
Is it possible to get another voucher if I have not used the one I currently have and it has expired?
To get a new voucher, send back the old one with a request to reissue it. Use the address that is on the voucher. STAP staff will reprint it and send it back to you with a new expiration date. You will then have another 3 months to use it.
Can I change my mind and have the voucher issued for a different device?
Yes, as long as the request to select a different device is put in writing and signed by the applicant and mailed to the STAP office.
What if an applicant receives and exchanges a voucher for a device and then reapplies for another voucher that functions in the same manner as the first device that they received? For example can an applicant get an amplified attachment and then ask for an amplified phone? What if an applicant got an amplified phone the first time and then wants another voucher for an amplified phone that has stronger amplification?
A person can get a voucher for a second device only if his or her disability changes and the first device no longer provides adequate telephone access. If this is the case, the second application should be certified as the applicant having a change of disability and there must be a statement in writing that explains why the first device no longer is sufficient.
Is an applicant who applies under "change of disability," and indicates that his or her disability has improved, eligible to request a different device? For example an individual who is certified as deaf gets a TTY, then is certified as hard of hearing (due to a cochlear implant) and wants an amplified phone.
A person is not eligible to receive a new device by applying under change of disability if the previous device will still provide them telephone network access. In the example stated above, a previous applicant who received a voucher for a TTY can still use the TTY after their change of disability.
How long does it take before my application will be processed?
It can take up to 150 days before an application is processed.
What law regulates the program?
The Texas Utilities Code regulates STAP.