Monday, Nov. 8, is the deadline for individuals to apply for flood relief assistance from FEMA and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

FEMA’s Individual Assistance program is designed to help disaster survivors with basic, critical needs such as a safe, sanitary and functional place to live while survivors look for a long-term or permanent housing solution. It is not a substitute for insurance coverage. FEMA Individual Assistance cannot duplicate other sources of assistance.

You can register with FEMA in several ways: go online to disasterassistance.gov, call 800-621-3362 or use the FEMA app for smartphones. If you use a relay service, such as video relay (VRS), captioned telephone service or others, give FEMA the number for that service. Lines are open from 7 a.m. to 1 a.m. local time, seven days a week.

Nov. 8, is also the deadline for homeowners, renters, businesses and nonprofits to apply to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) for low-interest disaster loans for physical property and personal property damage.

You may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via the SBA’s secure website at disasterloanassistance.sba.gov/ela/s/ or by visiting a Business Recovery Center. Paper applications may be requested by calling the SBA Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 or by sending an email to disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.

SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans are available to businesses and private nonprofit organizations of any size. The deadline to file economic injury applications is June 8, 2022.

There is no cost to apply for assistance from FEMA or the SBA.

Free legal help

If you need free legal assistance regarding your FEMA application or are uncertain if you should apply, the Disaster Legal Services (DLS) program is here to help. DLS is jointly coordinated by Legal Aid of N.C., the N.C. Bar Association and the N.C. Bar Foundation. As a part of that effort, Legal Aid will hold free legal clinics on Nov. 6 and 7 in Haywood and Buncombe counties to provide assistance to flood survivors.

The Haywood County location for free legal assistance is Cruso United Methodist Church, 11653 Cruso Road, Canton. The clinic will be held Saturday, Nov. 6, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Another free clinic will be held in Asheville at Legal Aid of NC, 547 Haywood Road, on Sunday, Nov. 7, from 1:30-6 p.m.

Call Legal Aid of N.C. at 866-219-5262 ext. 2657 to reserve your spot.

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