Only 48 Hours Remain to Register for Federal Disaster Assistance

Main Content
Release date: 
July 18, 2011
Release Number: 
1971-132

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—Disaster survivors who sustained storm and tornado damages between April 15 and May 31 have only 48 hours to register for federal disaster assistance.

Survivors must register for assistance with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and apply for a low-interest disaster loan with the U.S. Small Business Administration by Monday, July 18. The Alabama Emergency Management Agency and FEMA encourage survivors who have not registered to do so quickly.

There are two ways to register:

  • Call toll free 800-621-FEMA (3362). If a survivor has a speech disability or hearing loss and use a TTY, call 800-462-7585 directly; if they use 711 or Video Relay Service, call 800-621-3362. Lines are open 7 a.m. until 10 p.m.
  • Visit online 24 hours a day at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or m.fema.gov with a smartphone or tablet.

To speed up the registration process, survivors should make sure they have ready:

  • A pen and paper to write down important phone contacts; 
  • Their Social Security number; 
  • Current and pre-disaster addresses; 
  • Phone numbers; 
  • Type of insurance coverage; 
  • Total household income; and 
  • A routing and account number from their bank if they want to have disaster assistance funds transferred directly into their bank account.

Disaster assistance may include rental payments for temporary housing for those whose
homes are unlivable, grants for home repairs and replacement of essential household items not covered by insurance. There are grants to replace essential personal property and to help meet medical, dental, funeral, transportation and other serious disaster-related needs not covered by insurance or other federal, state or charitable aid programs.

Low-interest disaster loans are available from the SBA to homeowners, renters, nonprofits and businesses of all sizes. They are the largest federal source of disaster funds for repairing or replacing damaged or destroyed property.

While survivors are not required to accept a disaster loan, completing the SBA application is essential to receiving other assistance from FEMA.

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). If you have a speech disability or hearing loss and use a TTY, call 800-462-7585 directly; if you use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 800-621-3362.

The social media links provided are for reference only. FEMA does not endorse any non-government websites, companies or applications.

FEMA’s temporary housing assistance and grants for public transportation expenses, medical and dental expenses, and funeral and burial expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. However, applicants who receive SBA loan applications must submit them to SBA loan officers to be eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses.

Last Updated: 
July 16, 2012 - 18:46
State/Tribal Government or Region: