BATON ROUGE, La.— If you were directly impacted by Hurricane Laura and live in one of the 21 parishes designated for FEMA Individual Assistance and were receiving rental assistance from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) prior to the hurricane, you should register with FEMA.
You can apply for FEMA help if you were displaced from your HUD-assisted housing because of Laura. This includes those who were:
· Living in HUD-assisted public housing.
· Living in a privately owned apartment that provides rental assistance from HUD.
· Living in a private home using a Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher from a housing authority.
Some of the assistance you may be eligible for:
· Temporary assistance to pay for a place for you and your family to live.
· Grants to replace essential contents — such as clothing and essential household items — and medical, dental and burial expenses.
Those who have HUD rental assistance may receive FEMA help to pay for a place to live until:
· You relocate back to public housing.
· You relocate back to the private housing that provides HUD assistance.
· You sign a lease with a private property owner using a Section 8 voucher.
Federal law prevents FEMA from duplicating benefits provided by another agency. When a HUD-assisted resident's home becomes unlivable, HUD stops paying rental assistance for that residence. The survivor may then apply for FEMA Individual Assistance. There is no duplication of benefits because HUD is not paying rental assistance.
When the survivor moves back into a HUD-assisted residence or signs a new lease for rental housing under the Section 8 program, HUD assistance resumes. At that point, the survivor may no longer receive FEMA assistance.
The first step to be considered for FEMA help is to apply. There are three ways:
· Log onto DisasterAssistance.gov.
· Download the FEMA app. You can also use the app to check the status of your application.
· If you cannot access the website or FEMA app, call the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362. If you use TTY, call 800-462-7585. If you use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 800-621-3362. Those who use a relay service such as a videophone, Innocaption or CapTel should update FEMA with their specific number assigned to that service.
Visit DisasterAssistance.gov and enter your address to find out if your parish is declared for Individual Assistance.
For the latest information on Hurricane Laura, visit www.fema.gov/disaster/4559 or follow the FEMA Region 6 Twitter account at twitter.com/FEMARegion6.