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Replacing Personal Documents After a Natural Disaster

Release Date:
October 13, 2020

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Wildfire survivors in California who lost important documents may need replacements to apply for services and help rebuild their lives.

This guide provides links and contacts to replace these important documents. All of the organizations listed below offer online resources. If personal computers aren’t available, public libraries and other agencies may have computers available to the general public.

Documents and Who to Contact for Replacement

EBT Card

  • California’s CalFresh is part of the federal program known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP – formerly known as Food Stamps). For lost EBT card replacements call 877-328-9677 right away or contact your local county social services worker.

Birth and Death Certificates

  • California Department of Public Health is at www.cdph.ca.gov or 916-445-2684. Birth certificate: $25 fee. Death certificate: $21 fee.

Lost Green Card

  • Go to www.uscis.gov and complete Form I-90, Application to Replace a Permanent Resident Card, and file it online or by mail. Call 800-375-5283 to check application status.

California Driver License

  • Visit a California Department of Motor Vehicles office to complete an application or fill out the form online at www.dmv.ca.gov. Replacement license forms must be delivered in person. For more information, call 800-777-0133.

Bank Checks, ATM/Debit Cards or Safe Deposit Boxes

  • Contact your financial institution or get contact information from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation by calling 877-275-3342 or going to www.fdic.gov.

Credit Cards

Credit Report

Social Security Card

Fraud Alerts or a Credit Freeze

  • Fraud Alerts: Call the identity theft helpline at 877-438-4338 or contact the Federal Trade Commission at www.ftc.gov

Medicare Cards

  • Social Security Administration 800 633-4227 or www.ssa.gov


U.S. Savings Bonds

Tax Returns

  • Internal Revenue Service 800-829-1954 or download the Request for Copy of Tax Return form at www.irs.gov.

Military Records

Wildfire survivors from Butte, Lake, Monterey, Napa, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano, Sonoma and Yolo counties who suffered uninsured losses may be eligible for federal assistance. The deadline to register with FEMA for help is Nov. 21.

Survivors can register online at DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 (TTY 800-462-7585) between 7 a.m. and 10:30 p.m. PDT. If you use a relay service such as a videophone, Innocaption or CapTel, provide FEMA the specific number assigned to that service when you register.

For more information on California’s wildfire recovery, visit: caloes.ca.gov and follow us on Twitter @cal_OES, and on Facebook.com/CaliforniaOES. For FEMA, go to fema.gov/disaster/4558 and follow us on Twitter @femaregion9 and at Facebook.com/FEMA.


Last updated March 17, 2021