Major Disaster Declaration declared on January 26, 2017
Individual Assistance Applications
Total Individual & Households Program
Dollars Approved: $2,962,689.95
Total Public Assistance Grants
Dollars Obligated: $22,655,256.45
Designated Counties (Individual Assistance):Berrien, Cook, Crisp, Dougherty, Thomas, Turner, Wilcox, Worth
Stay in Touch
After you apply, we may need to contact you to schedule an inspection or to get additional information to help process your application. Let us know as soon as possible if you’ve moved or have a new phone number.
Other Language Resources:
- Español: Georgia Tormentas severas, tornados, y vientos en línea (DR-4297)
- Help After a Disaster in other languages
Beware of Fraud & Scams When Seeking Disaster Assistance
After a disaster scam artists, identity thieves and other criminals may attempt to prey on vulnerable survivors. The most common post-disaster fraud practices include phony housing inspectors, fraudulent building contractors, bogus pleas for disaster donations and fake offers of state or federal aid.
Survivors should keep in mind:
- Federal and state workers never ask for, or accept money, and always carry identification badges
- There is NO FEE required to apply for or to get disaster assistance from FEMA, the U.S. Small Business Administration or the state
- Scam attempts can be made over the phone, by mail or email, text or in person
Price gouging occurs when a supplier marks up the price of an item more than is justified by his actual costs. Survivors are particularly susceptible because their needs are immediate, and have few alternatives to choose from. If you find price gouging, contact your State's Office of the Attorney General.
Dealing with Contractors:
Survivors should take steps to protect themselves and avoid fraud when hiring contractors to clean property, remove debris or make repairs.
Simple rules to avoid becoming a victim of fraud:
- Only use contractors licensed by your state
- Get a written estimate and get more than one estimate
- Demand and check references
- Ask for proof of insurance
- i.e., liability and Workmen's Compensation
- Insist on a written contract and refuse to sign a contract with blank spaces
- Get any guarantees in writing
- Make final payments only after the work is completed
- Pay by check.
The best way to avoid fraud is to arm yourself against it by having a checklist to remind you of what you need to demand when hiring a contractor.
Charitable Giving Scams
Donating money or supplies to the relief effort is another way to help survivors. Be alert to scams during an emergency. Learn more about donating.
If you are aware of a potential charity scam, you can report it to the state consumer affairs or attorney general's office:
- Georgia - Call toll free 1-800-869-1123 or file a complaint online.
Those who question the validity of a contact or suspect
What to Expect After You Apply
Once homeowners register with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, a FEMA housing inspector will call to schedule an inspection for those living in designated counties. Here’s what survivors need to know about the inspection process:
Everyone should know:
- The FEMA inspector will show a photo ID badge.
- If you are not shown photo identification, then do not allow the inspection.
- If you suspect someone is posing as a FEMA inspector, call your local law enforcement agency.
- You may receive visits from more than one inspector. Other inspectors may represent federal, state, parish and local government agencies, the U.S. Small Business Administration, the National Flood Insurance Program and/or insurance companies.
- Representatives of volunteer agencies may contact you to offer their services.
Before the FEMA inspection, it’s important that you know:
- An adult 18 or older who lived in the residence before the disaster must be present for the inspection.
- That person must have the following documents:
- Photo identification;
- Proof of ownership and occupancy of the damaged residence such as: property tax bill; mortgage payment bill or receipt, or utility service bill;
- Homeowner and vehicle insurance documents;
- List of persons living in residence at time of disaster that you compiled; and
- List of disaster damage to the home and its contents that you compiled.
Most important to know:
- You cannot get an inspection without registering with FEMA.
- Call 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585. People who use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS) can call 800-621-3362.
- You can register online at www.disasterassistance.gov.
- You can register with FEMA at a Disaster Recovery Center.
How You Can Help
When disaster strikes, every little bit helps. To make the most of your contributions, please follow our guidelines to learn the most effective and safest ways to donate cash, goods, or time following a disaster.
- Cash is best. Financial contributions to recognized disaster relief organizations are the fastest, most flexible, and most effective method of donating. Organizations on the ground know what items and quantities are needed, often buy in bulk with discounts and, if possible, purchase through area businesses which supports economic recovery.
- Confirm donations needed. Critical needs change rapidly – confirm needed items BEFORE collecting; pack and label carefully; confirm delivery locations; arrange transportation. Unsolicited goods NOT needed burden local organizations’ ability to meet survivors’ confirmed needs, drawing away valuable volunteer labor, transportation, and warehouse space.
- Connect to volunteer. Trusted organizations operating in the affected area know where volunteers are needed, and can ensure appropriate volunteer safety, training, and housing.
Tips for Clean-Up
Below are a few simple guidelines to follow that will make the clean-up and salvage process safer and easier:
- Always wear protective clothing including long-sleeved shirts, long pants, rubber or plastic gloves and waterproof boots or shoes.
- Before entering your home, look outside for damaged power lines, gas lines and other exterior damage.
- Take photos of your damage before you begin clean up and save repair receipts.
- Turn off main electrical power and water systems and don’t use gas appliances until a professional can ensure they are safe.
- Check all ceilings and floors for signs of sagging or other potentially dangerous structural damage.
- Throw out all foods, beverages and medicines exposed to flood waters or mud including canned goods and containers with food or liquid.
- Also, throw out any items that absorb water and cannot be cleaned or disinfected (mattresses, carpeting, stuffed animals, etc.).
- Beware of snakes, insects, and other animals that may be on your property or in your home.
- Remove all drywall and insulation that has been in contact with flood waters.
- Clean all hard surfaces (flooring, countertops, appliances, sinks, etc.) thoroughly with hot water and soap or detergent.
Individual Assistance - Dollars Approved
Total Individual & Households Program (IHP) - Dollars Approved*
Total Housing Assistance (HA) - Dollars Approved*
Total Other Needs Assistance (ONA) - Dollars Approved*
Total Individual Assistance (IA) - Applications Approved*
Public Assistance - Dollars Approved
Total Public Assistance Grants (PA) - Dollars Obligated✝
Emergency Work (Categories A-B) - Dollars Obligated✝
Permanent Work (Categories C-G) - Dollars Obligated✝
* Dollars Approved: Assistance dollars approved but not necessarily disbursed.
✝ Dollars Obligated: Funds made available to the State via electronic transfer following FEMA's final review and approval of Public Assistance projects.
Learn more about FEMA Disaster definitions. Information is updated every 24 hours.