ASHEVILLE, N.C. -- The Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), has produced another installment of the “Ask FEMA” column for publication in newspapers throughout disaster-impacted states. This column provides important disaster recovery information to those impacted by recent disasters.
The column answers frequently asked questions that FEMA receives through the agency’s Helpline, Disaster Recovery Centers and website (). All topics that are relevant to the various stages of disaster recovery will be addressed in the column over the next few months. The column is approximately 500-600 words.
Since Hurricane Charley first struck Florida in early August, the agency has received over 1 million applications for disaster assistance. In September alone, there were 21 federal disaster declarations, with 15 of those including assistance for individuals, the most in a single month in the history of the agency.
FEMA appreciates your cooperation and participation in publishing this important disaster recovery information.
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.
This is another installment of the ASK FEMA column from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for anyone who has questions and needs answers about federal disaster assistance programs. These questions are selected from a list of frequently asked questions that FEMA receives at our Helpline, Disaster Recovery Centers and website (www.fema.gov). For a complete listing of frequently asked questions, please visit www.fema.gov. Throughout the next few months we will try to cover all the topics of disaster recovery.
Two weeks ago I mailed in documents FEMA had asked for. When I called the Helpline, the service representative said the documents were not in my file. What should I do?
Because of the record number of storms this fall, many of FEMA’s mail-related processes are backlogged. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience or concern this has caused. These problems are being solved and we are confident that the documents will be in your file soon. Please remember that, when you mail or fax documents to FEMA, it is very important to include your name, your social security number, the disaster number and your registration ID number on all paperwork. This will speed handling and assure that the documents are placed in the correct file. The numbers can be found on the cover page that is included with all FEMA correspondence in the upper left hand corner of any letter FEMA sends you.
The letter from FEMA said I had no damages or insufficient damages, but my home was damaged and some of my personal property was damaged too. What do I do?
You may appeal any decision. When you appeal a decision, you are asking FEMA to review your case again. Appeals may relate to your eligibility, the amount or type of help you received, late applications or requests to return money. You will not automatically get another inspection just because you appeal. For additional information on the appeal process, please refer to page 10 of your Applicant’s Guide or click on /about/process/.
I received my check for rental assistance, but there are no places to rent.
If you are unable to locate a place to rent call F...