CLINTON, Miss. -- Survivors of Mississippi's April storms and tornadoes can keep their disaster assistance applications on track by keeping their insurance companies on track.
When a disaster survivor is covered by insurance, the Federal Emergency Management Agency puts their aid request on hold until their insurance company makes a determination about their case. A determination can mean a denial or a settlement. Either way, FEMA needs to know.
"If you haven't heard back from your insurance company yet, it's time to contact them," said Mississippi Emergency Management Agency Director Mike Womack. "Don't let the process stop."
Consumers who are having problems with their insurance company can contact the Mississippi Insurance Department Consumer Helpline, 800-562-2957 or 601-359-2453 in the Jackson area.
"Consumers can also receive additional insurance information on a special disaster page on our website at www.mid.state.ms.us," said Commissioner of Insurance Mike Chaney.
"FEMA cannot duplicate benefits," said Terry L. Quarles, the federal coordinating officer for disaster recovery efforts in Mississippi. "We need to know what the insurance company will pay for before we can determine what help FEMA may be able to provide."
In some cases, FEMA can help cover costs not covered by insurance.
Another way to keep your application on track is to make sure FEMA knows how to get in touch with you. That means providing an up-to-date address and telephone number where you can be reached.
Call FEMA's Helpline at 800-621-FEMA (3362) to change your contact information or to ask about 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.