Major Disaster Declaration declared on October 04, 2019
Individual Assistance Applications
Total Individual & Households Program
Dollars Approved: $69,040,957.94
Designated Counties (Individual Assistance):Chambers, Harris, Jefferson, Liberty, Montgomery, Orange, San Jacinto
How to Apply for Assistance
Individuals and business owners who sustained losses in the designated area can begin applying for assistance by registering online at DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621- 3362 or 1-800-462-7585 TTY. The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. (local time) seven days a week until further notice.
The deadline to register for disaster assistance was December 3, 2019.
What to Expect During a FEMA Housing Inspection
After applying for federal disaster assistance, qualified residents in Chambers, Harris, Jefferson, Liberty, Montgomery and Orange counties will receive a call from a FEMA housing inspector as the next step in the recovery process.
The inspector will schedule an appointment 7 – 10 days after registration. Once confirmed, they will verify information on the application and then follow up to assess the property and damages listed on the application. The inspection generally takes 30-40 minutes and consists of a general examination of the home. There is no fee for the service.
The inspector is required to review and document both structural and personal property damage to file a report, but they do not determine eligibility or the value of damage or losses. FEMA officials will review the inspection report and issue an eligibility determination letter within a week of the inspection. If the application is approved, the letter will provide specific information on how the funds can be used.
For scheduled appointments, there must be someone 18 years of age or older who lived in the household prior to the disaster present. The inspector will request proof of information to verify.
An authorized inspector will wear an official FEMA ID badge. If the inspector is not an official FEMA representative, and requests any personal or financial information, end the meeting immediately and notify local law enforcement. Survivors may also call the toll-free FEMA Disaster Hotline at 866-720-5721.
In addition to FEMA housing inspectors, representatives from SBA and insurance company inspectors may visit neighborhoods in affected areas.
SBA may send a packet and application for a low-interest disaster loan. While the application must be completed and returned to that agency in order to remain eligible for other types of federal assistance, such as grants, the applicant does not have to accept the loan.
Understanding FEMA Determination Letters and How to Appeal
Survivors who registered with for disaster assistance will receive a determination letter explaining the eligibility decision and the reason for that decision. If approved, it will state the dollar amount of the grant and how the funds should be used and when ineligible, the letter explains why and how the applicant can appeal that decision.
Survivors receiving an “ineligible” letter are not necessarily disqualified for assistance. Additional information or corrections may be needed to process their application.
Some common reasons for being declared ineligible include:
- The person is insured and needs to provide an insurance settlement or denial to be considered for assistance
- Additional information is needed from the survivor, i.e., proof of identity, proof of occupancy, annual income, or a child care assistance letter
- There were multiple registrations using the same address
- Damages occurred to a secondary residence (where the survivor lives less than six months of the year)
- The home is safe to occupy, and/or personal property had minimal or no damage
- Missed inspections and no follow-up communication with FEMA
- FEMA is unable to contact the applicant
An appeal should be filed in the form of a signed letter within 60 days of the date on the determination letter. In the appeal, explain why you disagree with the decision. Include any requested information and supporting documentation. Make sure to include the following:
- Applicant’s full name, date of birth and current address
- Applicant’s signature and the date
- Applicant’s registration number (on every page)
- FEMA disaster declaration number – DR-4466 (on every page)
You must include a copy of your state-issued ID, have the letter notarized or include the statement “I hereby declare under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct.” If the person writing the appeal letter is not the applicant or a member of the applicant’s household, a statement must be included granting the writer authorization to act on their behalf.
Appeal letters and supporting documentation can be uploaded quickly to your account on DisasterAssistance.gov, faxed to 800-827-8112 with the cover sheet provided with your FEMA determination letter; or submitted at a Disaster Recovery Center where assistance is also available to assist in ensuring all necessary documents are included.
Letters may also be sent by mail to:
FEMA’s grant amounts vary because every applicant’s situation is different. This brochure explains the actions an applicant should take: Help After a Disaster.
For questions about eligibility letters, survivors can visit DisasterAssistance.gov, or call the Disaster Assistance help line at 800-621-3362 (TTY 800-462-7585).
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
If and when public assistance obligated dollar information is available for this disaster, it will be displayed here. Information is updated every 24 hours.
* Dollars Approved: Assistance dollars approved but not necessarily disbursed.
Learn more about FEMA Disaster definitions. Information is updated every 24 hours.