Disaster Assistance Made Easy; One Phone Call Starts The Process

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Release date: 
July 11, 2002
Release Number: 

Moorhead, MN -- Understanding the process of applying for federal/state disaster recovery assistance gives victims peace of mind and can help them begin rebuilding their lives.

In the early aftermath of a disaster, the most important types of assistance are those designed to meet emergency needs for immediate housing requirements and emergency repairs. These disaster assistance programs are to help people begin their recovery; they are not designed to return people's lives to their pre-disaster conditions.

Long-term assistance programs involve low-interest loans for homeowners, renters and businesses, from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). Individual family grants may be available to meet serious disaster related needs and necessary expenses not covered by insurance or other disaster assistance programs.

To register for federal/state assistance you must call the toll-free number at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). This is the ONLY way to access federal disaster assistance. When calling, have ready a phone number where you can be reached, your social security number, current mailing address, address of the damaged property, a brief description of damages, and any insurance information. For the hearing and/or speech impaired, the TDD number is 1-800-462-7585.

You will be given a control/registration number, which will help locate your file in the system in the future. Write this number down so you will have it handy. Within a few days, a FEMA inspector will call you to make an appointment to visit your damaged home or apartment.

Last Updated: 
July 16, 2012 - 18:46
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