(KION) FEMA is offering financial assistance for funeral expenses through its COVID-19 Funeral Assistance Program, and applications for funding are set to begin next week.
The agency announced that it will begin applications through its dedicated call center on Monday, April 12.
Families who have lost someone to COVID-19 after Jan. 20, 2020 are eligible if they meet this criteria:
- The death happened in the U.S., including U.S. territories and the District of Columbia.
- The death certificate must attribute the death to COVID-19.
- The applicant is a U.S. citizen, non-citizen national or qualified alien who incurred funeral expenses after the date above.
- The person who died does not have to be a U.S. citizen, non-citizen or qualified alien.
The amount of relief is limited to at most $9,000 per funeral or $35,000 per application. There is no cost to apply and the program is free. Applicants will need to provide an official death certificate, funeral expense documents and proof of funding received from other sources.
FEMA said that when applications open, there will be multi-lingual assistance. The agency said it has received reports of scammers reaching out to people offering to register them for assistance, but FEMA does not send those notifications and does not contact people before they register for assistance.
To apply for assistance, call 844-684-6333 or 800-462-7585 Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. PST. If you are eligible, you will receive the assistance through a mailed check or direct deposit.