Puerto Rico Hurricane Fiona

DR-4671-PR
Puerto Rico

Incident Period: Sep 17, 2022 - Sep 21, 2022

Declaration Date: Sep 21, 2022

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Now Closed: Period to Apply for Disaster Assistance

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The last day for individuals and families to apply for assistance after this disaster has passed. You are no longer able to begin a new claim.

To check the status on a previously submitted claim, visit DisasterAssistance.gov.

I Was Told to Call the U.S. Small Business Administration

FEMA is not allowed to provide disaster assistance for certain losses covered by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) disaster loans. The SBA provides low-interest disaster loans to individuals and households to help with disaster losses. FEMA works with the SBA to determine if you may qualify for Personal Property Assistance, Transportation Assistance, or a Group Flood Insurance Policy.

FEMA will automatically refer you to the SBA to be considered for a disaster loan if you meet SBA’s income standards. FEMA uses your household annual gross income and number of dependents to determine if you should be referred to the SBA.

If you are referred to the SBA, FEMA will contact you via an auto-dialer system to explain how to apply for a disaster loan. You must complete and return a loan application to be considered for an SBA loan or certain types of FEMA assistance. You do not have to accept an SBA loan offer. However, if you are approved for an SBA loan, and you do not accept it, you will not be referred back to FEMA for personal property or transportation assistance.

For more information about the SBA disaster loan program, please call the SBA at 800-659-2955 (TTY: 800-877-8339). SBA information is also available at www.SBA.gov/disaster or by email at disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.

Learn more about SBA loans

I Applied for Assistance. What's Next?

If You Have Insurance

Please contact your insurance company as soon as possible to file a claim. FEMA can only provide money after you get your insurance settlement. If your insurance doesn’t cover all of your home repair or rebuilding expenses, FEMA may be able to help.

FEMA can’t provide money for expenses covered by insurance or duplicate benefits from another source. When you get your insurance settlement or denial, please send a copy to FEMA as soon as you can.

If your insurance settlement is delayed more than 30 days from the time you file your claim, call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362.

Learn more about the steps after applying

If You Do Not Have Insurance

FEMA will verify your disaster-caused losses. The agency will schedule a time to inspect your home if you reported damage to your home or personal property. Or FEMA will ask you to send documents to verify your expenses.

You will receive notification letters from FEMA either by mail or electronic correspondence explaining your next steps. If necessary based on the losses you reported, an inspector will contact you by phone to schedule an inspection. If you miss the call, they will leave a voicemail message and make multiple attempts to reach you. The inspector should not need to view repair receipts or pictures of the damage. But if you begin cleaning up before the inspection, FEMA suggests you take pictures, make a list of your losses, and keep receipts for all of your disaster-caused expenses.

Find a Housing Counselor

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) provides support to a nationwide network of housing counseling agencies (HCAs) and certified counselors. HUD-participating HCAs are approved and trained to provide tools to current and prospective homeowners and renters so they can make responsible choices to address their housing needs in light of their financial situations.

Verifying Home Ownership or Occupancy

FEMA is required to verify you lived at the address in your application as your primary residence before providing most types of assistance. FEMA is also required to verify you owned your home before providing home repair or home replacement assistance. Learn more about this process.

As part of our effort to make the disaster assistance process quicker and reduce the burden on applicants, we try to verify occupancy and ownership by using an automated public records search.

If we cannot verify you lived in or owned the home that you listed on your application, we will ask you to provide documents to prove occupancy and/or ownership to help us determine if you are approved for assistance.

How Do I Appeal the Decision?

If you receive a letter stating that you are not approved for assistance or that your application is incomplete, you can still complete the application or appeal the decision within 60 days of receiving a decision letter. The letter would either be mailed to you or placed into your Disaster Assistance Center account, if you have set up an account.

Learn more about appeals

Frequently Asked Questions and Rumors

Learn more about common disaster-related rumors and how to report fraud. You can also get answers to frequently asked questions about emergency shelters, disaster assistance, flood insurance and more.

Multilingual Resources

You can find social media graphics with important safety messaging in various languages, including English, Chinese, Spanish and Vietnamese.

We also have videos in American Sign Language (ASL) on topics including:

How to Help

Volunteer and Donate

Recovery can take many years after a disaster. There are many ways to help such as donating cash, needed items or your time. Learn more about how to help those in need.

Don’t self-deploy to disaster areas. Trusted organizations in the affected areas know where volunteers are needed. Work with an established organization to make sure you have the appropriate safety, training and skills needed to respond.

FEMA Voluntary Agency Liaisons (VALs) support the significant contributions of voluntary, faith-based, and community stakeholders active in disaster by building relationships – and coordinating efforts – with and across partner organizations and government agencies.

Doing Business with FEMA

If you are interested in providing paid services and goods for disaster relief, visit our Doing Business with FEMA page to get started.

If you own a business involved with debris removal and want to work on clean-up efforts in affected areas, please contact the local government in affected areas to offer your services.

Local Resources

Local Resources Custom Text

Period to Apply for Hurricane Fiona Disaster Assistance Has Closed

The period to apply for Disaster Assistance ended on Monday, November 21, 2022. However, help is still available. Applicants should get in touch with FEMA to update information and receive application assistance.

Ways to Get in Touch With FEMA

  • Going online at DisasterAssistance.gov to check application status, upload requested documents, update contact information, and submit an appeal.
  • Calling the FEMA Helpline at 1-800-621-3362 to discuss their case with a FEMA representative, receive help understanding a FEMA determination, help writing an appeal, and rescheduling a missed home inspection. Press 1 for English, 2 for Spanish and 3 for all other languages.
    • People who use a relay service such as video relay service (VRS), captioned telephone service or others, provide FEMA the number for that service. Phone lines operate from 7 a.m. to 2 a.m. seven days a week.

Keep Your Recovery on Track

Verifying Home Ownership or Occupancy

FEMA is required to verify you lived at the address in your application as your primary residence before providing most types of IHP Assistance. FEMA is also required to verify you owned your home before providing Home Repair or Replacement Assistance.

As part of our effort to make the disaster assistance process quicker and reduce the burden on applicants, we try to verify occupancy and ownership by using an automated public records search.

If we cannot verify you lived in or owned the home that you listed in your application, we will ask you to provide documents to prove occupancy and/or ownership to help us determine if you are eligible for assistance.

Learn more:

How to Appeal Your FEMA Determination

If you disagree with a FEMA decision about your eligibility for disaster assistance, you have the right to submit an appeal within 60 days from the date FEMA has on the determination letter.

An appeal is a written request to FEMA to review your file again, and an opportunity to provide new or additional information not previously submitted that may affect the decision. You may appeal any decision from FEMA regarding your application for Individual Assistance, such as your initial eligibility decision, the amount or type of assistance provided to you, late applications, requests to return money, or a denial of Continued Temporary Housing Assistance.

In your appeal provide documentation of the damage that affected your essential living space or made your home uninhabitable. That includes home repair estimates and receipts, insurance information (settlements/denial of claim letter), contractor bids or photos. And be sure to include any information or documents that FEMA requests in the decision letter.

Keep in mind that after FEMA receives your letter, you may receive a phone call or a follow-up letter asking for more information.

You can get help writing your appeal letter, as well as address other disaster-related legal concerns through free legal disaster-related assistance provided by Disaster Legal Services (DLS). For information about DLS, call the toll-free legal aid hotline Monday – Friday: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. at 1-800-981-5342 or by email at info@ayudalegalpr.org.

If you have questions regarding the determination letter you received or how to file an appeal, you may contact a FEMA Helpline agent at 1-800-621-3362 (FEMA), or (TTY) 1-800-462-7585. You may also choose to request a copy of your file from FEMA to help you understand why you received the decision you want to appeal.

For more information and advice on the appeals process, see: Tips for Appealing a FEMA Decision

Continued Rental Assistance

Puerto Rico residents who received temporary rental assistance from FEMA after Hurricane Fiona may be eligible to continue receiving this benefit, if they can demonstrate an ongoing need for rental assistance and meet program qualifications.

To qualify for this benefit, survivors must have received initial rental assistance, show they still have disaster-related financial needs and show they are working on a permanent housing plan that provides safe, sanitary and functional housing, within a reasonable time frame. Also, survivors must demonstrate they are unable to return to their pre-disaster residence because it is uninhabitable, inaccessible, or not available due to disaster damage.

Eligible survivors may apply for continued rental assistance by providing:

  • A copy of their current lease;

  • receipts showing the proper use of federal disaster housing assistance;

  • current household income status; and

  • post-disaster housing costs.

To apply for continued rental assistance, survivors can call FEMA’s Helpline at 1-800-621-3362, from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. local time, seven days a week. Those who use a relay service, such as video relay service (VRS), captioned telephone service or others, must give FEMA the number for that service. Survivors can also visit disasterassistance.gov or download the FEMA app.

Extensions on rental assistance may be granted for three-month periods up to a maximum of 18 months from September 21, 2022, the date of the Hurricane Fiona disaster declaration.

Beware of Fraud and Scams

After disasters there are people who will try to take advantage of survivors. Protect yourself from fraud, scams, and identity theft:

  • Do not let someone into your home who claims to be a FEMA employee but does not have a FEMA photo ID. Always ask to see a FEMA photo ID badge. A FEMA shirt or jacket is not proof of identity.
  • FEMA personnel will never ask for money in exchange for an inspection or application assistance.
  • If you get a call informing you that you are eligible for a FEMA disaster assistance program, do not provide any personal information. FEMA personnel will not contact you if you did not register for FEMA assistance.

If you suspect fraud, contact local law enforcement and call the FEMA Disaster Fraud Hotline at 1-866-720-5721.

Learn more

Additional Resources

Disaster Legal Services (DLS)

Disaster Legal Services can provide free legal help to low-income disaster survivors. If you are not able to get adequate legal services for your disaster-related needs, DLS may be able to help with the following:

  • Insurance claims for medical bills, loss of property, and loss of life 
  • New wills, powers of attorney, and other legal papers lost during the disaster
  • Home-repair contracts and contractors
  • Problems with landlords
  • Proof of homeownership
  • FEMA assistance appeals

Disaster Legal Services attorneys are not FEMA employees. Their services are confidential and they do not share information with FEMA. 

For information about DLS, call the toll-free legal aid hotline Monday - Friday from 8 AM - 6PM at 1-800-981-5342 or by email at info@ayudalegalpr.org. This service is provided by the Young Lawyers Division of the American Bar Association and Servicios Legales de Puerto Rico in collaboration with FEMA.

Additional Multimedia

Below you can find social media graphics and images with important safety messaging in various languages, including English, Chinese, Spanish and Vietnamese.

Social Media and Contact Information

How to Help

Volunteer and Donate

Recovery can take many years after a disaster. There are many ways to help such as donating cash, needed items or your time. Learn more about how to help those in need.

Don’t self-deploy to disaster areas. Trusted organizations in the affected areas know where volunteers are needed. Work with an established organization to make sure you have the appropriate safety, training and skills needed to respond.

FEMA Voluntary Agency Liaisons (VALs) build relationships and coordinate efforts with voluntary, faith-based and community organizations active in disasters.

Doing Business with FEMA

If you are interested in providing paid services and goods for disaster relief, visit our Doing Business with FEMA page to get started.

If you own a business involved with debris removal and want to work on clean-up efforts in affected areas, please contact the local government in affected areas to offer your services.

Funding Obligations

Individual Assistance Amount
Total Housing Assistance (HA) - Dollars Approved $73,581,514.54
Total Other Needs Assistance (ONA) - Dollars Approved $575,536,468.72
Total Individual & Households Program Dollars Approved $649,117,983.26
Individual Assistance Applications Approved 741075
Public Assistance Amount
Emergency Work (Categories A-B) - Dollars Obligated $261,184,062.88
Permanent Work (Categories C-G) - Dollars Obligated $583,299,246.32
Total Public Assistance Grants Dollars Obligated $887,805,831.50

Disaster Recovery Centers (DRC) List

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