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Flood insurance reminder for recipients of 2017 federal disaster assistance

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Release Date:
October 2, 2020

DENTON, Texas – Late spring 2017 brought severe storms, winds and flooding for many northern and central Arkansas counties. Part of the eligibility of receiving federal financial assistance after a flood is that a homeowner or renter who lives in a high-risk flood area must obtain and maintain flood insurance, or not receive federal disaster assistance for home repairs and personal property replacement during another flood event. Call an insurance agent today to make sure you are covered by a flood insurance policy.

If a property affected by a flood event that has the obtain and maintain requirement is sold, the new owners are required to have flood insurance for the property as well. To learn more about the obtain and maintain flood insurance requirement, click here.  

The 2017 event resulted in a major disaster declaration with FEMA Individual Assistance in the following counties: Benton, Boone, Carroll, Clay, Faulkner, Fulton, Jackson, Lawrence, Prairie, Pulaski, Randolph, Saline, Washington, White, Woodruff and Yell. The average FEMA disaster assistance was $4,339. For those who had flood insurance, the average claim payment was $49,398. For these same counties, there are currently just under 6,000 National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policies. This is down almost six percent over the last year and nearly 22 percent over the past five years. Only one inch of water can cause $25,000 in damage to a home.

Additionally, FEMA purchased three-year flood insurance policies for 20 disaster survivors who met eligibility criteria. These policies expired on Aug. 14, 2020, and households were notified that they also have the obtain and maintain flood insurance requirement to be eligible for future disaster assistance in a flood event.

It is important to remember that anyone who has the obtain and maintain flood insurance requirement, including those who had a Group Flood Insurance Policy (GFIP), the homeowner or renter must purchase a standard flood insurance policy. After purchasing a standard flood insurance policy, a 30-day waiting period starts before coverage becomes effective.

Flood Insurance Can Be Key to Recovery
Flood insurance policies are crucial to recovering quickly following a flood event as homeowners, and renters’ policies do not typically cover flood damage.

Additionally, flood insurance will pay claims regardless of whether there is a major disaster declaration. Flood insurance claims can be paid for such events as flash flooding, storm sewer backup, river overflow, storm surge, mudslides or tropical systems.

Since its inception in 1968, FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) has paid more than $69 billion in flood claims to help survivors rebuild their lives following flood events.

  • To find an insurance carrier or agent, visit, or call FEMA NFIP Direct toll-free, (800) 638-6620, option 2.
  • For more information about NFIP and or insurance, call the National Flood Insurance General Call Center at 800-427-4661.
  • If you have questions about your Group Flood Insurance Policy, call the National Flood Insurance Direct Call Center at 800-638-6620.

To find out if you have a flood insurance requirement, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-3362 (voice, 711/VRS - Video Relay Service) (TTY: 800-462-7585). Multilingual operators are available (press 2 for Spanish).