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How to apply for disaster assistance

Presidentially declared disasters are eligible for help from FEMA. If your area is not eligible, state agencies and other organizations may offer assistance. Learn how to apply.

Who qualifies for FEMA relief?

You must live in a presidentially declared disaster area to receive financial assistance from FEMA. Look up your area in the address lookup tool to determine if you are eligible to receive help.

Not everyone qualifies for all the assistance programs in an area. FEMA offers an anonymous tool to help you check your eligibility. Get a personalized list of the disaster assistance you qualify for.

How to apply for FEMA disaster assistance

There are four ways you can apply for FEMA disaster assistance:

Information you will need to apply for disaster assistance

To apply for disaster assistance, you will need:

  • Your Social Security number
  • Insurance information 
  • A description of the damage caused
  • Your annual household income
  • Contact information
  • Bank account information for direct deposit

Check the status of your application

You can check the status of your application if you provided your email address and contact information when you applied for assistance. There are three ways to check your application:

  • Check your application status at if you created an account. Look for the "Check Status" button.
  • Check the status by calling 1-800-621-3362 (TTY: 1-800-462-7585).
  • Check the status or your application in person at a DRC. Find a DRC near you.

Find assistance if the disaster you experienced was not federally declared

The president of the United States decides which natural disasters are federally declared. In many cases, this decision is based on whether state and local governments in the disaster area can provide enough assistance to disaster survivors.

If the disaster you experienced was not declared an emergency federally, you may be eligible for help through:

LAST UPDATED: May 9, 2024


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