Information you need when applying for FEMA aid
- Social security number
- Address of the damaged home or apartment
- Description of the damage
- Information about insurance coverage
- Telephone number
- Mailing address
- Bank account & routing numbers for direct deposit of funds
Recovering financially – Turn to the American Red Cross for advice on insurance claims, cash flow, bills, and debts after disaster. Includes a list of vital documents with details on how to get them replaced.
GovLoans.gov – Gateway to all types of loans through the Department of Labor.
Jobs and benefits
Disaster unemployment assistance (DUA) – If you lost work because of a disaster, you may qualify.
Employee Benefits Security Administration – Get answers about health coverage and retirement benefits. Submit complaints about denial of benefits or report a problem with a plan. Call 1-866-444-3272 for a benefits advisor.
- IRS Disaster Assistance and Emergency Relief for Individuals and Businesses
- State Bar of Texas – 1-800-504-7030 – Toll-free legal hotline that helps people find answers to basic legal questions and locate recovery resources in the wake of a disaster. The hotline is answered in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese and directly connects callers with legal aid providers in their area.
- Natural Disaster Relief Hotlines and Clinics
- Disability Rights Texas – Supports legal rights of those with disabilities.
- Lone Star Legal Aid – LSLA is one of the largest providers of free legal aid in the U.S., serving 76 counties. If you need disaster relief legal services, call LSLA’s Disaster Assistance Hotline at 1-866-659-0666 or contact your county’s branch office.
- Texas RioGrande Legal Aid (South, Central and West Texas) – If you need legal assistance after a disaster, call Texas RioGrande Legal Aid’s Disaster Assistance Hotline at 1-866-757-1570.
Business and farms
- Disaster loans – Small Business Administration loan types include home and personal property, business, and economic injury. Questions? Call the SBA Customer Service Center at 1-800-659-2955.
- Disaster assistance programs – The US Department of Agriculture offers a variety of programs and services to help communities, farmers, ranchers and businesses that have been hard hit by a hurricane.
- American Red Cross Ready RatingTM – Evaluate and improve your business’s ability to face and recover from a disaster.
- Farmstead preparedness and recovery – Disaster preparedness and recovery techniques for farms and ranches.
- Anticompetitive conduct – Learn how to spot and report disaster-related anticompetitive conduct. This includes bid rigging, price fixing and customer or market allocation.
- How to file a flood insurance claim – Get a step-by-step guide from FEMA.
- Mortgage insurance for disaster survivors section 203(h) – If your home has been damaged or destroyed in a declared disaster, you may apply under this program. If approved, insured mortgages may be used to buy or rebuild a primary home. Only FHA-approved lenders may participate.
- Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) – Guide for filing claims.
- Answers to common questions if your car is flooded.
- Carefully read your policy to see your coverage. This includes property, auto and health and umbrella policies.
- Know the deadlines to send written notices and do not wait to the end of the time period to submit your written notice.
- Make an inventory of lost or damaged items
- Take photos and or videos of damages before making repairs.
- Gather receipts you have for lost or damaged items.
- Prepare a list of items you want the adjuster to check.
- Be nice to your adjuster.
- Keep notes with dates, time and names when speaking to the insurance company.
- Keep all mailed correspondences from the insurance company.
- Carefully read paperwork before depositing checks.
Replacing important documents
- Replace vital records – Browse a list of sites where you can get everything from your Social Security card to your passport replaced.
- Replace U.S. currency – U.S. Department of Treasury. Find out how to submit a claim for damaged or mutilated notes and coins. See examples of damaged currency.
- Replace U.S. savings bonds – U.S. Department of Treasury. Bonds are now only reissued or replaced in electronic form, or you can ask to have them cashed.
- Salvage procedure – How to care for materials affected by disaster: papers records, books, photos, film, and magnetic media, like audio, video and computer disks.
- Identity theft – Find out how to protect yourself against identity theft, especially if you’ve lost important documents.