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Federal aid helps Floridians recover from Hurricane Michael

The damages caused by Hurricane Michael continue to haunt people in Florida and cause significant damage to their pocketbooks. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, over $957 million in federal assistance has been provided to Florida as a result of the hurricane, five months after it was declared a disaster. This aid has taken several forms, including that of grants, loans and insurance payments for individual homeowners, business owners and state and local governments.

FEMA said that the disaster assistance included $137 million in grants given to 31,000 renters and homeowners. People in 12 counties designated for individual assistance received these funds, which help to cover some of the hurricane damages not covered by insurance. This amount included $112 million in housing grants to pay for repairs, replacements or rental assistance to help people house themselves after the storm. It also included $24 million of other types of assistance that helped storm victims pay for property replacement, medical expenses or dental costs.

In addition, the government disbursed over $624 million in low-interest disaster loans. Offered by the federal Small Business Administration, the loans included support for businesses to repair or replace physical property damaged by the hurricane or help get through difficult economic times after the storm. The storm displaced almost 2,100 households, who have stayed in temporary hotel rooms paid for by FEMA. Around 400 families remain in this temporary housing today. In addition, 760 families received temporary housing units until permanent homes were found.

Some homeowners are continuing to suffer from hurricane damages but have found little support from their insurance companies. Instead, they face delays or denials of their legitimate homeowners' insurance claims. An insurance attorney may be able to help people fight to receive the funds they need for their hurricane damage claims.

Source: Insurance News Net, "Federal Disaster Assistance Approaches $1 Billion For Hurricane Michael", 03/13/2019

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