KENTUCKY (WEHT) – The time people would need to appeal FEMA’s decision is when they believe FEMA has deemed them ineligible for assistance.

Determination letters are sent when an application is missing information. Reasons for this could include that an individual didn’t show proof of their identity, proof they own their home, or proof they lived in their home for a major part of the year before the December 10 through 11 tornadoes struck Kentucky.

  • 60 days to send FEMA an appeal.
    • Count 60 days from the date on FEMA’s determination letter. That’s the date to circle on the calendar as a reminder that it’s the last day to send the appeal.
    • Keep in mind that after FEMA receives the letter, the one who tried to appeal the decision may receive a phone call or a follow-up letter asking for more information.
    • For instructions about how to write an appeal, visit this link.
  • Carefully read FEMA’s letter before writing the appeal.
    • The person who plans to appeal needs to understand why FEMA said the application was “ineligible,” or that they won’t be receiving assistance, or that FEMA is holding off on making a decision. Often, the reason is as simple as missing documents or information.
    • Read FEMA’s letter very carefully from beginning to end to better understand what the agency is asking to be done.
  • Include evidence to support the appeal request.
    • The person who plans to appeal needs evidence to support what they are claiming in their appeal. It is important to include the documents or information FEMA requests. Here’s what to include with the letter:
      • A copy of the FEMA letter saying they’re denied assistance, or that the agency didn’t reach a decision.
      • Insurance letters – Keep in mind that FEMA cannot give anyone a grant for something their insurance company already paid them for.
      • Proof of occupancy – A copy of a utility bill, a driver’s license, a lease or bank statement, a local school document, motor vehicle registration or an employer’s letter. All can be used to prove the damaged home or rental was someone’s “primary” residence. Primary means someone lives or lived at that address more than six months of the year.
      • Proof of ownership – Mortgage or insurance documents; tax receipts or a deed; receipts for major repairs or improvements dating as far back as 2016; or a court document. This is where people can get replacement documents at.
  • If anyone has a hard time writing an appeal, they should get someone to write it for them.
    • It could be someone in their household, a friend or a lawyer. Tell FEMA, in a signed statement, that the writer is authorized to act on their behalf.
  • Mail, fax or upload their appeal letter, and don’t forget to sign and date it.
    • People have 60 days from the date on their FEMA determination letter to mail, fax or upload their appeal if they want FEMA to reconsider its first decision. Sign and date the appeal, and don’t forget to include the nine-digit FEMA application number, the disaster number (DR-4630-KY) and documents that can be shown as proof.
      • Mail: FEMA National Processing Service Center, P.O. Box 10055, Hyattsville, MD 20782-8055 
      • Fax: 800-827-8112, Attention: FEMA
      • To set up a FEMA online account or to upload documents, go to this website, click on “Check Status” and follow the directions
  • What people can expect after submitting their appeal letter.
    • People may receive a call or letter from FEMA asking for more information, or FEMA may schedule another inspection of their home. Whichever the case, once someone has sent FEMA an appeal, they can expect a decision letter within 90 days after FEMA receives it.