NEW BERLIN, Wis. -- If you registered for disaster assistance with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and received a letter stating you are not eligible, state and federal recovery officials have one important message – don’t give up.
“The letter might mean that FEMA doesn’t have all the information it needs to make decisions about the application,” said Paul Ricciuti, federal coordinating officer for the disaster recovery. “It’s important to take the time to carefully read the information and instructions in the letter.”
The letter provides applicants with specific reasons for the decision. Sometimes it’s merely missing information such as a signature, proof of identity, documentation of disaster damage, and/or proof of occupancy or ownership of the damaged property.
In other cases FEMA may not have your insurance information. By law, FEMA cannot duplicate what your insurance covers, so you need to provide details about what is covered by your policy. It's important that you file a claim with your insurance company as soon as possible. Applicants have up to 12 months from the date they registered with FEMA to submit insurance information for review and possible approval of disaster assistance to cover uninsured losses.
Finally, if you received a disaster home loan application from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) you must complete and return it to be considered for FEMA grants that cover personal property, vehicle repair and other disaster-related expenses. No one is obligated to accept a loan, but FEMA cannot continue to process your application without the completed SBA loan application.
If you have questions about the FEMA letter you received, call FEMA at 800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 800-462-7585 between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. CDT daily. You can also call to check the status of your application.
FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.