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Damaged Wells, Furnaces and Septic Systems May be Covered by FEMA

Release Date:
April 19, 2021

Texas residents whose furnaces, septic systems or wells were damaged by February’s severe winter storms may be eligible for financial assistance under FEMA’s Individuals and Households Program. If denied assistance, applicants may appeal.

What type of assistance is available?

  • For private wells, furnaces, and septic systems, FEMA may provide assistance or reimbursement for the cost of a professional, licensed technician’s estimate of the repair or replacement of these items.
  • You also may receive assistance for the actual repair or replacement of these items not typically covered by homeowner’s insurance.
  • If you have applied for FEMA assistance and have not had a home inspection, you should call FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 for instructions related to your situation. At the time of your inspection please let the FEMA inspector know you have a private well and/or septic system that may have been damaged by the storm. If you have registered and your house has already been inspected, you should call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 for instructions on how to appeal.

What if my original application was denied?

Every applicant may appeal FEMA’s decision. Appeals must be submitted in writing within 60 days of the date of FEMA’s letter determining eligibility. Survivors of February’s severe winter storms in Texas who registered with FEMA may have received a determination letter regarding eligibility for assistance. Read the letter carefully. It may not be the final answer. FEMA may simply need additional information or documentation to process your application.

If you have questions or need to speak about your eligibility status, call 800-621-3362, open daily from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., CDT. Multilingual operators are available.

Applicants can appeal a FEMA determination, to do so, you need to submit supporting information along with a letter describing in detail the reason (or reasons) you are appealing.

You should include your full name, FEMA application number and disaster number, pre-disaster primary residence address and current phone number and address on all submitted documents. You can find the application and disaster number printed on page 1 of your determination letter.

You can submit your appeal and any associated documentation by:

  1. Uploading your documentation online at disasterassistance.gov.
  2. Mailing your documents and letter within 60 days of receiving your determination letter to the address below. Your letter with accompanying documents must be postmarked within 60 days of the date on your letter from FEMA regarding your eligibility.

FEMA National Processing Service Center

P.O. Box 10055

Hyattsville, MD 20782-7055

  1. Faxing your information to 800-827-8112.

Survivors should register online at disasterassistance.gov. If you cannot register online, call 800-621-3362 (TTY: 800-462-7585). Those who use a relay service such as a videophone, Innocaption or CapTel should update FEMA with their specific number assigned to that service.

If someone other than you or the co-applicant is writing the letter, you must sign a statement affirming that the person may act on your behalf. You should keep a copy of your appeal for your records.

In addition, it’s important to make sure FEMA has your current contact information, including addresses, phone numbers and bank accounts. If FEMA does not have your correct contact information, you may miss letters or phone calls about your application, your appeal or your payment status.

By appealing, you are asking FEMA to review your case. If you have questions, call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362. TTY users may call 800-462-7585. Lines are open 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. CST daily.

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Last updated April 19, 2021