What FEMA can do for you when disaster strikes


A lot of folks are trying to rebuild their lives following Hurricane Harvey. More than 600,000 people statewide have registered with FEMA for help.

The first thing you need to do to apply for federal assistance is visit disasterassistance.gov and complete an application or call 1-800-621-FEMA. You must make a claim within 60 days of your property damage.

FEMA has 10 days to respond to claims. If eligible, you will get assistance within 2-3 days.

Who is eligible for financial compensation?

“Our primary recovery efforts are for those who suffered any type of damages to their domicile, their residence, where they live. Whether you are a homeowner or a renter, we have a program here to help you recover from Hurricane Harvey,” said FEMA Media Relations Specialist William Lindsey.

The next step is knowing what assistance is available for you.

  “We have crisis counseling, we have litigation, how to deal with contractors to work with repairing your residence. There are a lot of programs we have. You have to plug in with us, and we will avail those recovery resources to you. We also have grants to repair damages not covered by insurance, grants to cover medical expenses not covered by insurance, and help replacing vehicles are all compensation options that are available,” said Lindsey.

 To make things run smoothly, there are a few items you should bring when visiting one of the FEMA locations.

“Proof of residency is very important. That is your driver’s license, you may have a bill, telephone, gas, electrical, whatever happens to be. We need proof of identification and proof of residence,” said Lindsey.

You will also need to bring your social security number, insurance information, and bank account number for direct deposit.

Lindsey says they do not put an umbrella on their recovery efforts. They look at each home owner, each renter, each individual specifically for their individual needs. Whatever your needs are, you have to let FEMA know so that they can help.

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