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Iowa residents who sustained damage from the August 10 derecho may receive a letter from FEMA saying they are ineligible for disaster assistance and can appeal the decision if they disagree. All disaster assistance applicants have the right to appeal, and sometimes a quick fix is all that is needed. Read your letter carefully to clarify why your application was labeled “ineligible” or “incomplete.” It will explain the application status and what you can do to respond.
Common reasons for ineligibility
Keep in mind
Collecting the following documents before you start your appeal may make the process easier:
Send a letter with any additional documentation to FEMA asking for reconsideration. This must be done within 60 days of the date of your ineligibility letter. Late appeals will be considered with a written or verbal explanation as to why the appeal was late (for example, lack of available contractors, illness, and/or work).
You can send the letter in one of the following ways:
There may be other reasons why FEMA determined you were ineligible. However, you may still be eligible for a low-interest disaster loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) or a grant under FEMA’s Other Needs Assistance program. If you have questions about the letter you received, call FEMA at 800-621-3362 (TTY: 800-462-7585).
For more information on the Iowa disaster and a variety of recovery resources, log on to: iowa.gov/disaster-assistance-programs and www.disasterrecovery.iowa.gov.
FEMA’s mission is helping people before, during, and after disasters.
Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has faced discrimination or needs help with accessible communication, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-3362. Multilingual operators are available.
HSEMD Mission: To lead, coordinate and support homeland security and emergency management functions in order to establish sustainable communities and ensure economic opportunities for Iowa and its citizens.