Agents Not Going House-To-House Handing Out $500 Checks
On top of all the other issues facing it, the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) is having to deal with false rumors as it helps with the cleanup and recovery of the Florida Keys in the wake of the devastation left by Hurricane Irma.
The federal government agency has been confronted by three primary rumors, including word that agents are showing up to destroyed houses giving residents checks for $500.
Here’s the rumors and the truths, according to FEMA.
• RUMOR: Houses on stilts do not qualify for FEMA Insurance. FALSE: FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program covers a variety of elevated homes. To obtain a flood insurance policy from the NFIP, you need to live in a community that participates in the NFIP. Because several factors can determine eligibility of a structure, the best way to know whether your home qualifies for coverage is to consult your flood insurance agent. Regardless of whether you have coverage under NFIP, you can still apply for FEMA disaster assistance for free at https://www.disasterassistance.gov/.
• RUMOR: FEMA is paying volunteers $700/day. FALSE: FEMA does not solicit volunteers to work on behalf of the agency, but rather hires and compensates qualified staff. In Florida, FEMA is hiring local employees to assist with disaster recovery. Go to the website www.employflorida.com to apply.
• RUMOR: FEMA’s Disaster Assistance Survivor Teams are going door-to-door handing out $500 checks. FALSE: FEMA’s Disaster Assistance Survivor Teams are going door-to-door to register survivors for disaster assistance (www.disasterassistance.gov). They offer this assistance in a variety of languages. Our Disaster Assistance Survivor Teams do not hand out checks nor do they carry cash.
What is true is that FEMA trailers for temporary housing have arrived at Naval Air Station Key West. They are for eligible residents approved by FEMA through individual assistance. To date, 84 residents whose homes were either destroyed or too damaged to live in have have claimed trailers.