FEMA Disaster Assistance Following Hurricane Irma
What is FEMA?
Simply put, FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) is a government agency that was created to help individuals recover from catastrophic events, like Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria. In light of the recent devastation in Florida following Hurricane Irma, we wanted to share some valuable information about FEMA, and assistance programs that might be available to you if you are located in a designated disaster area. To find out if you are in a designated disaster area, please visit this link: http://www.floridadisaster.org/info/.
What Types of Assistance Programs Does FEMA Provide?
- Rental payments for temporary housing (i.e. hotel) for those whose homes are not habitable.
- Grants for home repairs and replacement of essential household items not covered by insurance to make damaged dwellings safe, clean, and functional.
- Grants to replace personal property and help meet medical, dental, funeral, transportation, and other disaster-related needs not covered by insurance or other federal, state, and charitable aid programs.
- Unemployment payments up to 26 weeks for workers who temporarily lost jobs because of the disaster and who do not qualify for state benefits, such as self-employed individuals.
- Low-interest loans to cover residential losses not fully compensated by insurance.
o Loans available up to $200,000 for primary residence
o $40,000 for personal property, including renter losses
o Loans available up to $2 million for business property losses not fully compensated by insurance (Source: U.S. Small Business Association)
- Loans up to $2 million to small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives and most private, non-profit organizations of all sizes that suffered disaster-related cash flow problems and need funds for working capital to recover from the disaster’s adverse economic impact. (Source: U.S. Small Business Association)
- Loans up to $500,000 for farmers, ranchers and aquaculture operators to cover production and property losses, excluding primary residence. (Source: Farm Service Agency, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture.)
How to Apply for Assistance
Please note that you have 60 days from the date of declaration to apply for assistance.
Individuals who sustained losses in the designated area(s) can begin applying for assistance by:
- Visiting DisasterAssistance.gov
- Calling (800) 621-3362 or (800) 462-7585
For more detailed information regarding FEMA and other governmental assistance for Hurricane Irma, please utilize the links listed below.