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Take Charge Of Your Recovery

Release date: 
May 11, 2011
Release Number: 

RALEIGH, N.C. -- People in 19 North Carolina counties who sustained losses from the storms and tornadoes that struck on April 16 can speed the process of getting state and federal disaster assistance with these tips:

Register and File

  • File your insurance claim and register for state and federal disaster aid. Those with
    disaster-related damages should call the Federal Emergency Management Agency registration line at 800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 800-462-7585. Phone lines are open daily 7 a.m. to
    10 p.m. and help is available in all languages. Online registration is available at all times at
  • Register, even if you are insured. Your insurance coverage may not be adequate to cover all
    of your losses.

After Registering

  • Keep your information up to date. Use the Helpline option at the FEMA registration toll-free number to update your contact information, including a new address or phone number.
  • Visit a Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) for answers to your questions. Find the nearest disaster recovery center by calling FEMA’s Helpline at 800-621-FEMA (3362) or online at
  • Return all forms promptly. After registering, you may receive a U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) disaster loan application package in the mail. SBA disaster loans are not only for businesses, but for homeowners and renters as well. Complete and return these forms promptly ? they are an important part of the disaster-assistance process. SBA representatives at disaster recovery centers will assist in completing your loan application as well as answer any of your questions.
  • Read all FEMA letters and documents. Applicants eligible for disaster assistance will receive a letter from FEMA telling them how the money can be spent. Federal assistance may have to be repaid if it is duplicated by insurance or other assistance received.
  • The letter says I’m ineligible. Now what? If you receive a FEMA letter saying you are ineligible for assistance, it is important to follow up by visiting a Disaster Recovery Center or by calling the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-FEMA. The letter may mean one or more aspect of your application needs more information or correction.
  • ?Take responsibility for your recovery. If you are not satisfied with FEMA’s decision on your application, you can appeal in writing to the FEMA Appeals Officer as explained in your letter. Appeals must be filed within 60 days of the date of the FEMA letter.

President Obama issued a Major Disaster Declaration on April 19 that made federal aid available to supplement the state and local recovery efforts in the area struck by severe storms, tornadoes and flooding.

The North Carolina counties under the disaster declaration are Bertie, Bladen, Craven, Cumberland, Currituck, Greene, Halifax, Harnett, Hertford, Hoke, Johnston, Lee, Onslow, Pitt, Robeson, Sampson, Tyrrell, Wake and Wilson.

For more information about this disaster, go to and click on the red “April Tornadoes” tab. More information is also available at

FEMA’s temporary housing assistance and grants for public transportation expenses, medical and dental expenses, and funeral and burial expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. However, applicants who ...

Last Updated: 
July 8, 2017 - 10:49
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