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Insured or not, FEMA says register for Hurricane Ian recovery assistance

 FEMA Disaster Survivor Assistants help Hurricane Ian survivors at a “one day only” registration intake center at the Rural Heritage Center in Geneva, Florida, Seminole County on October 6, 2022.
FEMA
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FEMA Disaster Survivor Assistants help Hurricane Ian survivors at a “one day only” registration intake center at the Rural Heritage Center in Geneva, Florida, Seminole County on October 6, 2022.

Insured or not, if you have been impacted by Hurricane Ian, FEMA has one message for you: register for assistance.

Regardless if you have homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, are a small business owner, or have no insurance at all, if you are a Florida resident who needs Hurricane Ian recovery assistance, FEMA spokesperson Ken Higginbotham says register.

“The very first step is to get registered," said Higginbotham. "Get in the system. They get a registration number, and it’s like that key that can open up the door to many programs for disaster survivors.”

One of those programs is Transitional Sheltering Assistance, where FEMA directly pays hotel costs at participating hotels and motels in Alabama, Florida and Georgia that provide emergency shelter to survivors.

For those with insurance, Higginbotham says FEMA cannot assist with losses already covered by primary insurance, but FEMA may help fill in gaps left uncovered.

If you receive a denial letter after registration, Higginbotham notes that applicants should appeal the claim instead of reapplying.

Apply online, or locate a FEMA Disaster Recovery Center for in-person help.

A center is open in Lee County at Lakes Regional Library. Two more centers will be opening in Fort Myers and North Port in the coming weeks.

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Tara Calligan