How to Appeal a FEMA Decision

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Release date: 
December 14, 2011
Release Number: 
4042-019

MIDLOTHIAN, Va. -- Some individuals who registered for federal disaster assistance due to the August 23 earthquake and subsequent aftershocks may have been denied aid. However, an appeals process exists ensuring that those affected by the earthquake will receive all legally eligible benefits.

"The recovery process doesn't necessarily end with the initial determination," said Federal Coordinating Officer Don Keldsen. "Sometimes ineligibility may just mean that more information is needed."

If you believe you should be eligible for assistance or are dissatisfied with the amount you received, you can call FEMA's Helpline for information on how to file an appeal. Specialists are available from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. at 1-800-621-3362. Individuals with a speech disability or hearing loss who use a TTY can call 1-800-462-7585. Multilingual operators are available to answer calls. The lines will be closed December 25-26 and January 1-2. You also can find instructions for filing an appeal in the "Help After a Disaster" guide that FEMA sends to all who register for assistance.

Appeals must be made in writing and sent by mail or fax to FEMA within 60 days of receiving the letter of determination. The appeal letter should include new or missing information, documents, and damage repair estimates supporting the appeal request. It is also important to include your name, the address of your damaged home, your FEMA registration number and the number of the disaster (for example, DR-4042-VA), which can be found in the letter you received from FEMA.

Mail appeals to:

FEMA-Appeals Officer
National Processing Service Center
P.O. Box 1005
Hyattsville, MD 20782-8055

Appeals can be faxed to: 1-800-827-8112.

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.

Last Updated: 
July 16, 2012 - 18:46
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