Officials recommend tips to FEMA applicants denied flood assistance
BATON ROUGE – The Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency and FEMA are encouraging applicants who have received denial letters for flood assistance to read the letters carefully to find out why.
According to officials, some applicants that have been denied are only missing a portion of necessary information continue the process in receiving assistance.
"There may be an easy fix if someone did not sign a document or if your application is missing a necessary insurance form. Don't give up on the process. Follow up with FEMA and file an appeal," Jim Waskom, GOHSEP director, said.
FEMA officials recommend that if an applicant disagrees with a denial decision to follow the following steps:
Read the letter carefully to find out why the decision was made.
- Is additional information needed?
- Insurance determination letter
- Proof of occupancy or ownership
- Proof of ID
- Applicant's signature
Common reasons for an initial denial decision are that the damage was to a secondary home or a rental property, someone else in the household applied and received assistance, disaster-related losses could not be identified or insurance covered all the losses.
Officials also recommend to call FEMA at 800-621-3362 or 800-462-7585 for help with filing an appeal or any questions regarding the decision.
In addition, applicants can file a written appeal letter:
- Explaining why they think the decision was incorrect,
- Provide supporting information and documents,
- Include their FEMA registration number on all documents
- Sign the letter.
Officials say that applicants can mail or fax their appeal within 60 days of the decision letter date or drop it off at one of the FEMA disaster recovery centers.