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Don’t Wait on Insurance to File For FEMA Aid or Apply for an SBA Disaster Loan

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Release date: 
December 31, 2012
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WINDSOR, Conn. — Disaster officials say residents should file their homeowner’s insurance claims first, but not wait on an insurance settlement to register for FEMA disaster assistance or complete an application for an SBA disaster loan.

“We want to make sure everyone who had damage from Sandy gets all the help they are eligible for,” said Federal Coordinating Officer Albert Lewis. “Don’t think you have to wait for an insurance adjuster. File your insurance claim, then register with FEMA and get the process started.”

Officials say it is always best to document damage thoroughly with photos and/or videos in case some of the damaged items have to be disposed of during the cleanup or before an inspector can inspect the property.

Residents of Fairfield, Middlesex, New Haven and New London counties, and the Mashantucket Pequot and the Mohegan Tribal Nations located within New London County who had damage from Hurricane Sandy may be eligible for federal disaster assistance from the FEMA Individual Assistance grant program.

Survivors can register online anytime day or night at, or with a smartphone or other Web-enabled device at Survivors can also register by phone anytime by calling FEMA at 800-621-3362. The TTY number is 800-462-7585. Multilingual operators are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Multilingual operators are available at the close of the English message.

Registering for disaster assistance with other agencies or organizations does not register survivors for FEMA disaster assistance. Having FEMA flood insurance does not register policyholders for disaster assistance; flood insurance claims are handled separately.

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 800-621-3362. For TTY, call 800-462-7585.

The U.S. Small Business Administration  is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. SBA helps homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes, and private, nonprofit organizations fund repairs or rebuilding efforts and covers the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property. These disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations.

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: 
January 3, 2013 - 09:15
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