FAQ: Understanding Your FEMA Determination Letter
Q: My FEMA determination letter says that my application for disaster assistance is “ineligible” or “incomplete.” What can I do?
A: All disaster assistance applicants have the right to appeal, and sometimes a quick fix is all that is needed to change a “no” to a “yes.” Read your letter all the way through to clarify why your application was labeled “ineligible” or “incomplete.” Always be sure to follow up—do not just give up—with the determination letter.
Q: I want to appeal my determination letter. How can I go about doing that?
A: All appeals must be in writing. When writing your appeal, explain why you think the decision about the amount or type of assistance you received is not correct. You, or someone who represents you or your household, must sign the letter. If the person writing the letter is not a member of your household, there must be a signed statement from you saying that that person may act for you and your household.
Q: What do I do with my written appeal and my other appeal documents?
A: Bring your determination letter, your written appeal and the supporting documents requested in your determination letter to any disaster recovery center. You can locate a disaster recovery center near you by visiting fema.gov/disaster-recovery-centers, calling the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362, or downloading the FEMA mobile app.
Q: I cannot make it to a disaster recovery center. Can I still appeal my determination letter?
A: Yes. You can mail your written appeal and all supporting documents to:
You can also fax your appeal packet to 800-827-8112, to the attention of the Individuals and Households Program. When mailing or faxing your appeal packet, be sure to include your personal FEMA registration number and the disaster number, DR-4277-LA, on all of your documents.
Q: Can I email my appeal packet to FEMA?
A: No. FEMA cannot process your appeal via email, but you can submit it on our website. If you would like to go through the appeal process electronically, you can open a Disaster Assistance Center (DAC) account at www.disasterassistance.gov. Once you have created your account, you can update your current contact information, upload your appeal documents, and review letters from FEMA. When you upload the required documents to your DAC account, an appeal packet is automatically created which can then be submitted for review.
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