Most Public Assistance (PA) Program projects are free of eligibility disputes or, if eligibility issues do arise, they are quickly resolved. When the parties cannot reach a mutually agreeable solution, however, PA Program applicants may utilize a two-tiered appeal process under which the applicable FEMA regional office decides the first appeal and, if a second appeal is filed, FEMA headquarters decides the second appeal. For specific information on the administrative appeals process, please see 44 C.F.R. § 206.206.
Some applicants may also be able to challenge FEMA eligibility determinations before an independent arbitration panel. There are two arbitration processes available to certain applicants: (1) arbitration for eligibility disputes related to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita; and (2) arbitration authorized under a new pilot program called the Dispute Resolution Pilot Program (DRPP). The information below will assist applicants who may be eligible to request arbitration before an independent review panel in properly making those requests.