HARRISBURG, Pa. -- As the Nov. 18 registration deadline for individual disaster assistance approaches, state and federal officials remind insured homeowners and renters who have not yet received help that they may still be eligible for assistance with September tropical storm damages.
Applicants who received a letter with a determination of "INS-insured" and a grant amount of $0 should call the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Helpline/Teleregistration number at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) as soon as the insurance claim is settled. Hearing- or speech-impaired individuals may call the TTY number at 1-800-462-7585. These numbers are both for new registrations and for help if you have already registered. They are operational seven days a week, from 6 a.m. until midnight. On-line registration and additional disaster recovery information also are available at www.fema.gov.
"The INS-insured code means that the applicant has insurance," explained FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer Nick Russo. "By law, FEMA cannot duplicate what insurance already covers nor pay deductibles. But under-insured repair and personal property loss assistance may be available, which FEMA will determine once an applicant's insurance claim is settled.”
Those who are waiting for federal assistance because of insurance delays should contact their insurance agency and request a settlement letter. That information, and any new or additional information since the initial application was filed, should be mailed to the address provided in the determination letter from FEMA.
“If you have insurance and disaster damage and have not yet registered with FEMA – even if you have insurance – you should call now. If you wait to receive the insurance settlement before registering, it may be too late,” said State Coordinating Officer David M. Sanko.
On March 1, 2003, FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. FEMA's continuing mission within the new department is to lead the effort to prepare the nation for all hazards and effectively manage federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident. FEMA also initiates proactive mitigation activities, trains first responders, and manages the National Flood Insurance Program and the U.S. Fire Administration.