FEMA to start accepting applications for COVID funeral assistance
By The Star Staff
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will begin accepting applications for funeral assistance next Monday through its dedicated call center.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has brought overwhelming grief to many families,” the agency said. “At FEMA, our mission is to help people before, during and after disasters. We are dedicated to helping ease some of the financial stress and burden caused by the virus.”
Under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021 and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, FEMA will provide financial assistance for COVID-19-related funeral expenses incurred after Jan. 20, 2020.
“Additional guidance is being finalized and will be released to potential applicants and community partners as soon as possible. In the meantime, people who have COVID-19 funeral expenses are encouraged to keep and gather documentation,” FEMA said.
To be eligible for funeral assistance, the following conditions must be met: the death must have occurred in the United States, including the U.S. territories and the District of Columbia; the death certificate must indicate the death was attributed to COVID-19; and the applicant must be a U.S. citizen, non-citizen national, or qualified alien who incurred funeral expenses after Jan. 20, 2020. There is no requirement for the deceased person to have been a U.S. citizen, non-citizen national, or qualified alien.
The COVID-19 funeral assistance number is 1-844-684-6333.
“If you had COVID-19 funeral expenses, we encourage you to keep and gather documentation,” the agency said. “Besides the official death certificate, the applicant should have funeral expenses documents such as receipts or the funeral home contract as well as proof of funds received from other sources.”