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Louisiana (DR-4611) Frequently Asked Questions and Rumor Control

We continue to work with federal, state, local, tribal and community partners to support the ongoing response for Ida. As clean up efforts begin across several states, this page offers answers to rumors and frequently asked questions about Louisiana (DR-4611).

Rumors and Scams

Do your part to the stop the spread of rumors by doing three easy things:

  1. Find trusted sources of information.
  2. Share information from trusted sources.
  3. Discourage others from sharing information from unverified sources.

We will share information about current rumors or scams related to Louisiana Hurricane Ida relief on this page.

Get more information on rumors and scams from our partners.

Scams

Do not trust anyone who offers financial help and then asks for money or personal information.

  • FEMA will never ask you to share personal information or apply for assistance through text message.
  • DHS, FEMA, HHS and CDC staff never charge for disaster assistance.
  • Federal and local disaster workers do not solicit or accept money.
  • Beware of visits, calls or emails from people claiming to be from FEMA asking for your Social Security number, bank account or other sensitive information. Giving out this type of information can lead to identify theft.

Learn how to report disaster fraud.

Rumors and Frequently Asked Questions

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  • You can apply or update your information online at DisasterAssistance.gov, by calling 800-621-3362 (TTY: 800-462-7585) or through the FEMA mobile app.
  • If you use a relay service, such as video relay service (VRS), captioned telephone service or others, give FEMA the number for that service.

There are several ways to apply for disaster assistance: 

  • Online at DisasterAssistance.gov
  • Use the FEMA mobile app. 
  • Call FEMA at 800-621-3362 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Multilingual operators are available. If you use a relay service, such as video relay service (VRS), captioned telephone service or others, give FEMA the number for that service.
  • Temporary FEMA disaster recovery centers have opened in several hurricane-effected parishes. Check the FEMA App or visit the FEMA DRC Locator to find the locations and hours of operation. 

Survivors who have already applied for FEMA assistance but were later evicted due to damage to other parts of their home should call FEMA at 800-621-3362 or visit a temporary disaster recovery center. Displaced survivors can reach out even if they were previously determined ineligible for FEMA assistance. Check the FEMA App or visit the FEMA DRC Locator to find the locations and hours of operation of the temporary disaster recovery centers.

Louisiana renters who face eviction or have been evicted due to Hurricane Ida may be eligible for disaster assistance from FEMA. 

FEMA is also partnering with the Louisiana State Bar Association and the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division to provide free legal aid to low-income individuals with disaster legal needs, such as help addressing evictions. Call the toll-free legal aid hotline at (800) 310-7029, or you can get legal advice online through Louisiana Free Legal Answers. 

Fact:

The deadline to file applications for property damage is Oct. 28, 2021. The deadline to return economic injury applications is May 31, 2022.

The SBA has established a Virtual Disaster Loan Outreach Center that is open Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Survivors can contact an SBA customer service representative via email at FOCWAssistance@sba.gov or by phone at 800-659-2955. Survivors can apply online at https://disasterloanassistance.sba.gov.

Fact:

Qualifying for an SBA loan does not mean you are suddenly ineligible for FEMA assistance. There are several important reasons to complete and submit an SBA application, even if you think you don’t currently need a loan.  For example, you may discover that you were underinsured for the amount of work required to repair or replace your home. An SBA low-interest disaster loan may bridge the gap between your recovery costs and the settlement amount. 

Fact:

SBA offers loans for homeowners up to $200,000 to repair or replace your primary residence. The loans are customized to your personal financial circumstances. On a case-by-case basis, the SBA may be able to assist with the refinance of your current mortgage(s).

SBA can help renters and homeowners replace household contents (e.g., clothing, furniture and appliances) and vehicles, referred to as personal property.  Homeowners and renters are eligible for up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged or destroyed personal property.

Fact:

If SBA determines you are eligible for a loan, you do not have to accept it. However, if you do qualify for an SBA loan and you choose not to accept it, additional resources may not be available to you for disaster recovery.

Fact:

Businesses of all sizes and private nonprofit organizations may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory and other business assets. SBA can also lend additional funds to businesses and homeowners to help with the cost of improvements to protect, prevent or minimize the same type of disaster damage from occurring in the future.

For small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofit organizations of any size, SBA offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans to help meet working capital needs caused by the disaster. Economic injury assistance is available to businesses regardless of any property damage.

Fact:

Submitting the application makes it possible for you to be considered for additional grants. If you apply for an SBA low-interest disaster loan and are not eligible, this may open the door to additional assistance from FEMA. If SBA denies the loan application, you may be eligible for additional FEMA grant assistance to replace essential household items; replace or repair a damaged vehicle; cover storage expenses or meet other disaster-related needs.

Last updated September 9, 2021