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National Disaster

Legal Aid

Florida Hurricane Sally 2020

FLORIDA HURRICANE SALLY

Disaster Legal Hotline: 1-866-550-2929

Severe storms and flooding hit areas of Florida starting on September 14th. On September 23rd, a Major Disaster Declaration was issued for the state of Florida, making federal funding available to individuals and households who sustained damage as a result of the severe storms and flooding. Assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster. People in the following areas are eligible to receive federal disaster assistance. Additional areas may be designated later.

  • Bay (County)
  • Escambia (County)
  • Okaloosa (County)
  • Santa Rosa (County)
  • Walton (County)

For this disaster 4564, assistance for affected individuals and families is available and people are urged to apply through FEMA.

Disaster Number: 4564

IMPORTANT DEADLINES

FEMA Application Deadline Sunday, November 22, 2020
Deadline to apply for Disaster Unemployment Relief Friday, November 6, 2020
Appeal Your FEMA Decision

If you would like to appeal FEMA's determination on assistance, you have 60 days from the date on the determination letter to do so.


Key resources for those impacted by this disaster

GOVERNMENT DISASTER RELIEF BENEFITS

Residents and businesses affected by this disaster can apply for government disaster relief benefits in several ways:

  • Online at DisasterAssistance.gov
  • On the FEMA Mobile App,
  • Text “DRC” and a zip code to 43362 (4FEMA) to locate a Disaster Recovery Center in your area (standard message and data rates apply), or by
  • Calling 800-621-3362 (FEMA). Applicants who use 711 or Video Relay Service may also call 800-621-3362. People who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability and use a TTY may call 800-462-7585. The toll-free numbers are open (TIMES). Multilingual operators are available. Press 2 for Spanish and press 3 for other languages. 
  • For official news and press releases related to this disaster, please visit (insert page here)
  • Note: Apply to FEMA to trigger the SBA Disaster loan process.
  • Download this quick guide for an overview on the disaster assistance process.

LEGAL ASSISTANCE AND RESOURCES

  • A LEGAL AID HOTLINE is now available for survivors in Florida who cannot pay for an attorney:
    • Survivors may CALL 1-866-550-2929 at any time to request assistance.
    • Click here for the full press release. Individuals who qualify for assistance will be matched with Florida lawyers who have volunteered to provide free legal limited help.
  • For legal assistance and other helpful recovery information, you can visit:
    • Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division –   The purpose of the Young Lawyers Division is to assist The Florida Bar in its purposes, to stimulate and encourage the interest and participation of YLD members in the programs of The Florida Bar, to provide a full and complete program of activities and projects designed to be of interest and assistance to YLD members, and to engage in such activities as shall tend to further the best interests of the legal profession.  The section coordinates the activities of YLD members and serves as a medium for fostering discussion and free interchange of ideas relative to the duties, responsibilities and problems of YLD members.
    • American  Bar  Association  Young  Lawyers  Division  – The  ABA  YLD,  the  largest  national  organization  of  young  lawyers,  provides  leadership  in  serving  the  public  and  the  profession,  and  promotes  excellence  and  fulfillment  in  the  practice  of  law.  Its  parent  organization,  the  ABA,  is  the  national voice of the legal profession and one of the largest voluntary professional membership groups in the world.
    • Federal  Emergency  Management  Agency–    FEMA  coordinates  the  federal  government’s  role  in  preparing for, preventing, mitigating the effects of, responding to, and recovering from all domestic disasters,  whether  natural  or  man-made,  including  acts  of  terror.    Through  an  agreement  with  the  American Bar Association, FEMA underwrites the cost of operating toll free legal assistance lines for survivors in areas designated as federal disaster sites.
    • Legal  Services  of  North  Florida,  Inc.–   Legal  Services  of  North  Florida,  Inc. is  a  private,  not-for-profit  corporation  that  works  to  ensure  low-income  people  have  equal  access  to  the  courts.    LSNF  serves individuals and families in sixteen counties across the central and western panhandle, including Franklin,  Jefferson,  Leon,  Wakulla,  Okaloosa,  Walton,  Bay,  Gulf,  Holmes,  Washington,  Escambia,  Santa Rosa, Calhoun, Gadsden, Jackson, and Liberty.  Since 1976, LSNF has provided legal aid and advised low-income and elderly persons.
    • Disaster Legal Aid.Org  – The National Disaster Legal Aid Resource Center, or DisasterLegalAid.org (DLA), is a nationwide project that hosts self-help tools and legal information for  people  and  communities  impacted  by  natural  disasters.  DLA  also  serves  as  a  central  hub  for  collaboration,  communication,  and  networking  among  legal  advocates  serving  disaster-affected individuals.  It  is  a  collaborative  effort  of  Lone  Star  Legal  Aid,  Pro  Bono  Net,  the  American  Bar  Association, the Legal Services Corporation, and the National Legal Aid & Defender Association.
    • United Policyholders  – United Policyholders is a non-profit voice and information resource for insurance consumers with expertise in assisting victims with flood insurance claims.
  • If you need to appeal a FEMA denial on your own, please see here to get an interactive form to appeal and letter requesting a copy of your file.

  • For Frequently Asked Questions about FEMA appeals, please click here.
  • Stay up-to-date with the latest on the News page.
  • Help After a Disaster: FEMA's Guide for the Individual Applicants
  • You might get a call about applying for an SBA loan.  Listen!
  • Do you need help understanding the FEMA application and appeals process? Click here to download "Figuring Out FEMA," a friendly guide that explains FEMA's general disaster relief assistance process. 

OTHER RESOURCES THAT CAN HELP

ARE YOU AN ATTORNEY WHO CAN HELP? 

  • Familiarize yourself with the resources and trainings available at https://www.disasterlegalaid.org/trainings/.
  • Bookmark United Policyholder's (UP) website and resources, including the Roadmap to Recovery and Advocacy and Action. UP's mission is to be a trustworthy and useful information resource and an effective voice for consumers of all types of insurance in all 50 states.
  • Consider joining the National Disaster Legal Aid Advocacy Center to connect with other attorneys and advocates responding to natural disasters. The Center offers monthly training calendar emails, specialized advocacy resources, a member roster, and discussion lists you can sign up for.