FEMA approves Individual Assistance for 77 Texas counties

Liberty County is one of 77 Texas counties approved for Individual Assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency related to last week’s devastating winter storms. The FEMA assistance is designed to help eligible applicants who are not insured or are underinsured. FEMA will not cover insurance deductibles for disaster survivors.

In a statement issued Saturday, FEMA stated, “Texas homeowners and renters in the 77 counties designated for individual assistance who sustained damage may now apply for disaster assistance with FEMA. If you have insurance and are applying for disaster assistance, you must also file a claim with your insurance company as soon as possible. By law, FEMA cannot duplicate benefits for losses covered by insurance. If insurance does not cover all your damage, you may be eligible for federal assistance.”

Texas Governor Greg Abbott responded to President Joe Biden’s partial approval of Texas’ request for a Major Disaster Declaration afterward. Abbott thanked the president for his assistance as Texas responds to the impacts of winter weather across the state.

“While this partial approval is an important first step, Texas will continue to work with our federal partners to ensure all eligible Texans have access to the relief they need. The funds provided under the Major Disaster Declaration may provide crucial assistance to Texans as they begin to repair their homes and address property damage.”

Texas counties included in the Major Disaster Declaration are Angelina, Aransas, Bastrop, Bee, Bell, Bexar, Blanco, Brazoria, Brazos, Brown, Burleson, Caldwell, Calhoun, Cameron, Chambers, Collin, Comal, Comanche, Cooke, Coryell, Dallas, Denton, DeWitt, Ellis, Falls, Fort Bend, Galveston, Gillespie, Grimes, Guadalupe, Hardin, Harris, Hays, Henderson, Hidalgo, Hood, Jasper, Jefferson, Johnson, Kaufman, Kendall, Lavaca, Liberty, Madison, Matagorda, Maverick, McLennan, Montague, Montgomery, Nacogdoches, Nueces, Orange, Palo Pinto, Panola, Parker, Polk, Rockwall, Sabine, San Jacinto, San Patricio, Scurry, Shelby, Smith, Stephens, Tarrant, Travis, Tyler, Upshur, Van Zandt, Victoria, Walker, Waller, Wharton, Wichita, Williamson, Wilson and Wise counties.

Individuals and business owners in counties included in the President’s declaration who sustained losses in the designated area can begin applying for assistance by registering online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-3362 or 1-800-462-7585.

For people with insurance, the Texas Department of Insurance has compiled the following suggestions to help Texans as they work through the repairs at their homes and properties:

  • Make a list of damaged property. Take pictures or videos and don’t throw anything away until your claim has been settled and your insurance company says it is okay to discard of these photos, video and documents.
  • Prevent further damage by turning off the water and covering broken windows and holes in your roof, if possible.
  • Save your receipts for items purchased to make repairs. Your policy may cover these costs.
  • Jot down the names, phone numbers and email addresses of the insurance representatives with whom you discuss your claim. Keep this information for future reference.
  • Ask about additional living expenses if you are no longer able to stay in your home due to the extent of the damages from the winter storms. Some insurance companies will pay the expenses of people who are displaced from their homes.

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