There has been quite a bit of bad information running around about what to do if you receive a determination letter from FEMA indicating that you are “ineligible for disaster assistance. As a result, we thought we would publish some information that comes straight from the experts…..FEMA and the Ohio Emergency Management Agency. Here is what they had to say in a recent news release:
July 19, 2019
FEMA News Desk: 614-220-7242
Ohio Emergency Management Agency News Desk: 614-799-3695
Understanding Your FEMA Determination Letter
Q: My FEMA determination letter says 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 do 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 explaining that the person may act on behalf of 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. Disaster recovery center locations are available www.fema.gov/disaster/4413 or by calling the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-FEMA (3362).
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:
FEMA – Individuals and Households Program
National Processing Service Center
P.O. Box 10055
Hyattsville, MD 20782-7055
Page 2, Understanding Your FEMA Determination Letter
You can also fax your appeal packet to 800-827-8112, Attention: 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-4413-AK, on all 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 account at www.DisasterAssistance.gov. Once the account is created, you can update your current contact information, upload your appeal documents and review letters from FEMA. When you upload the required documents to your account, an appeal packet is automatically created which can then be submitted for review.