BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Before the Federal Emergency Management Agency can provide assistance, applicants must be able to prove their identity. Insufficient identification is one reason applicants may be told they are ineligible for assistance.
The Alabama tornadoes destroyed many documents that need to be replaced so survivors can verify their identity to keep their application moving through the FEMA process.
It’s not unusual for important documents to be lost in a disaster. That’s why the state of Alabama and FEMA want to make sure people know how to replace lost documents and why people need to stay in touch with FEMA after they register.
Recovery specialists at disaster recovery centers can make referrals for survivors who need to replace documents.
In general, people can contact:
- The nearest Social Security office to replace their Social Security card;
- Their county health department for a birth certificate (Alabama births) or the bureau of vital statistics in the state where they were born;
- Their insurance agent or company for a copy of their policy;
- Their local probate judge or License Commissioner Office for a duplicate driver’s license (proof of identity is required);
- Their utility company for a copy of electric, water or gas bills to prove occupancy;
- The Alabama Department of Revenue for tax records; or
- Their county courthouse for property records.
If you received a letter saying you are not eligible for assistance, it will state the reason for the decision and explain your right to appeal. If you have questions about any letter from FEMA, call the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362 (TTY at 800-462-7585) or visit a disaster recovery center. You can locate a center with your smartphone or tablet at m.fema.gov or online at www.fema.gov/drclocator.
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.
Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call
The social media links provided are for reference only. FEMA does not endorse any non-government websites, companies or applications.
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