MICHIGAN – All Michiganders who applied for federal assistance received a letter from FEMA explaining their eligibility. If you disagree with the decision, or additional assistance is needed, you may be able to have your case reconsidered.

Those who have not yet registered with FEMA should call 800-621-3362 (TTY: 800-462-7585). The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. ET seven days a week until further notice. Or register online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or through the FEMA App. The deadline to register for FEMA assistance is Sept. 8. 

Michigan residents who can no longer draw water from private wells or had damage to their septic system or furnace due to the May disaster could be considered for additional financial assistance under FEMA’s Individuals and Households Program (IHP).

Private Wells

The cost of drilling a new well may be considered for federal funding if the private well is the sole source of water for the primary residence and is unusable, even if it is not damaged.

- If an applicant has already had an inspection and the well wasn’t reported, they may send FEMA a dated and signed letter, along with a contractor’s estimate, stating they are appealing for the well. 

- In situations where an applicant receives FEMA assistance for their private well, but additional help for these costs is necessary, the applicant may also submit an appeal letter. 

- The applicant should provide to FEMA a verifiable estimate/receipt indicating the well was physically damaged, collapsed, and/or is no longer producing potable water as a direct result of the disaster. They will need to include a dated and signed written letter, along with the contractor’s estimate, indicating they are appealing for the well. 

- Note that upon appeal, FEMA may pay the actual cost for drilling (not to z If an applicant has already had an inspection and damage to the furnace or septic system wasn’t reported, they may send FEMA a dated and signed letter, along with a contractor’s estimate, indicating they are appealing for these items. 

- In situations where an applicant receives FEMA assistance for their furnace or septic system but additional help for these costs is necessary, the applicant may also submit an appeal letter. 

- The applicant should provide to FEMA a verifiable estimate/receipt indicating the furnace and/or septic system was damaged as a direct result of the disaster. They will need to include a dated and signed letter, along with the contractor’s estimate, indicating they are appealing for the additional costs of these items.

Appealing Other FEMA Decisions

Applicants who disagree with other FEMA decisions have the option to submit an appeal letter with additional documentation to have their case reconsidered. The appeal should include a letter explaining what they are appealing, be signed and dated, and include supporting documentation, such as a copy of a verifiable contractor’s estimate. 

Ways to File an Appeal

Appeals should be submitted 60 days after the initial decision:

- By mail: FEMA’s Individuals and Households Program, National Processing Service Center, P.O. Box 10055, Hyattsville MD 20782-7055.

- By fax: 1-800-827-8112.

- Online via a FEMA online account: to set up an online account, visit www.DisasterAssistance.gov, click on “Check Status” and follow the directions.

- Visit a Documentation Drop-off Center: Locations and hours can be found online at DisasterAssistance.gov, by scrolling down and searching “Michigan” under the “Find Local Resources” section on the main page.

FEMA staff are also contacting applicants to discuss their case or request additional information. It’s important to answer those phone calls to make sure the application process continues. If there is any doubt when receiving a call from someone stating they work for FEMA, do not give out any information, but call 800-621-3362 (TTY: 800-462-7585) between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m. ET to verify the call is legitimate.

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