Fact Sheet:FEMA Determination Letters: How to File an Appeal

If your application for disaster assistance following Hurricane Harvey was denied or you feel the award amount is insufficient, you have the right to an appeal. The determination letter is intended to explain which category of assistance was processed, the decision made including amount, what action can be taken, and if any additional information should be provided.

Applicant needs are assessed based on a number of factors, including eligibility requirements. In addition to missing information, applications may be turned down because:

Damage is not to the primary residenceAnother household claim is already in existenceDisaster-related losses cannot be verifiedLosses have been covered by insurance

Carefully read the determination letter to understand why the decision was made and how you can receive the assistance you need. For more information, you may contact the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362 or 800-462-7585 (TTY). Information is also available at DisasterAssistance.gov.

An appeal must be filed in the form of a signed letter within 60 days of the date on the determination letter. In the appeal, explain why you disagree with the decision. Include any requested information and supporting documentation. Make sure to include the following:

Applicant’s full name, date of birth and current addressApplicant’s signature and the dateApplicant’s registration number (on every page)FEMA disaster declaration number – DR-4332 (on every page)

You must include a copy of your state-issued ID, have the letter notarized or include the statement “I hereby declare under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct.” If the person writing the appeal letter is not the applicant or a member of the applicant’s household, a statement must be included granting the writer authorization to act on their behalf.

Appeal letters and supporting documentation can be uploaded quickly to your account on DisasterAssistance.gov, faxed to 800-827-8112 with the cover sheet provided with your FEMA determination letter; or submitted at a Disaster Recovery Center where assistance is also available to assist you with ensuring all necessary documents are included. Letters may also be sent by mail to:

National Processing Service Center
P.O. Box 10055
Hyattsville, MD 20782-8055

For more information on Hurricane Harvey and Texas recovery, visit the Hurricane Harvey disaster web page at https://www.fema.gov/disaster/4332, the FEMA Harvey Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/FEMAHarvey, the @FEMARegion6 Twitter account and the Texas Division of Emergency Management website at https://www.txdps.state.tx.us/dem.


Original author: Carmen.Castro
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