Findlay, OH -- Individuals who suffered damage from the tornadoes and severe storms on November 10, and were insured, may still be eligible for disaster assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
"If you were uninsured or your insurance policy did not cover some of your disaster-related damages or losses, FEMA may be able to help," FEMA's Federal Coordinating Officer Ron Sherman said. "Even if you have insurance, take that first step and apply with FEMA. You don't have to wait to get your insurance settlement before you apply."
Anyone who sustained damage should apply for assistance with FEMA by calling the toll-free registration number 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). The number for speech and hearing-impaired individuals is TTY 1-800-462-7585. The phone lines are open between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m., Monday through Saturday.
"Disaster assistance is designed to cover uninsured and under-insured disaster-related losses, but cannot duplicate services and funds compensated by an insurance claim or provided by another assistance program," Ohio Emergency Management Agency's State Coordinating Officer Dale Shipley said.
The disaster programs available include temporary housing, repair grants to make a home liveable, low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) for homeowners, renters or business owners and other aid programs, including disaster unemployment assistance for self-employed individuals.
Uninsured and under-insured losses that may be covered by SBA low-interest loans include debris removal on personal property, damaged and destroyed fences, tree trimming services, damaged and destroyed sheds and other outbuildings, tree replacement and landscaping losses.
Government disaster assistance covers basic needs only and will not normally compensate you for your entire loss. If you have insurance, the government may help pay for basic needs not covered under your insurance policy. Residents should contact their insurance agent first, then if they have unmet needs they should call FEMA to apply. Some disaster aid does not have to be paid back, while other forms of help may come in the form of loans. The FEMA representative will explain the details to you when you call.