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December Deadline to Apply for Federal Disaster Assistance Nears

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Release Date:
12월 4, 2023

HONOLULU – Time is winding down for homeowners and renters to apply for FEMA disaster assistance if they had damage or losses to their property from the August wildfires on Maui. You may also apply for a disaster loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration, a FEMA partner in Maui’s recovery.

For both federal agencies, the deadline to apply is Monday, Dec. 11.

Disaster survivors are encouraged to file insurance claims for damage or losses to their primary homes, personal property and vehicles before applying for FEMA assistance. You may even apply for FEMA assistance while waiting to hear about your insurance claim. FEMA grants do not have to be repaid and FEMA assistance is nontaxable and will not affect eligibility for Social Security, Medicaid or other federal benefits.

The American Red Cross, another vital FEMA partner, is providing financial assistance, temporary housing in hotels and other services, including assisting survivors who may be ineligible for certain FEMA programs. The Red Cross invites you to schedule an appointment at, or speak to a Red Cross representative at a Disaster Recovery Center, or call 800-RED-CROSS (800-733-2767). Find a center here: DRC Locator (

FEMA’s Individual Assistance program is designed to help you with basic, critical, disaster-related needs such as a safe, sanitary and accessible place to live. Assistance includes rental assistance, lodging expenses reimbursement, and home repair and replacement assistance.

To apply for FEMA assistance, visit, use the FEMA mobile app or call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362. If you use a video relay service, captioned telephone service or others, give FEMA your number for that service when you apply. Helpline operators are available from 1 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week, and they speak many languages. Press 2 for Spanish. Press 3 for an interpreter who speaks your language.

For an American Sign Language video on how to apply, go to You may also visit any Disaster Recovery Center to get answers to your questions.

FEMA works closely with the U.S. Small Business Administration, which provides low-interest disaster loans for homeowners, renters, nonprofit organizations and businesses. Some applicants may be referred to the SBA to apply for a disaster loan. Homeowners may borrow up to $500,000 from SBA to repair or replace their primary residence. Homeowners and renters may borrow up to $100,000 to repair or replace personal property.

For SBA disaster assistance, you may apply online and download applications at Applicants may also receive information by calling SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 or emailing

For SBA applicants who are deaf, hard-of-hearing or have a speech disability, dial 711 to access telecommunications relay services. Completed applications may be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.

For the latest information on the Maui wildfire recovery efforts, visit and Hawaii Wildfires - YouTube. Follow FEMA on social media: @FEMARegion9 and You may also get disaster assistance information and download applications at