FEMA Releases New Jersey Superstorm Sandy Statistics
Since Hurricane Sandy hit, FEMA has periodically released details on the amount of federal assistance that has been provided to New Jersey victims of the storm. On August 5, 2013, FEMA published the most recent totals of disaster assistance provided to New Jersey survivors of Superstorm Sandy. According to FEMA’s website, total federal assistance to New Jersey so far has been $5.5 billion.
According to FEMA, the $5.5 billion is comprised of the following:
- $3.5 billion in total National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) payments made on claims to date
- $409.2 million in FEMA grants disbursed for individuals and households
- $352.4 million for housing assistance
- $56.8 million for other needs
- $810.5 million in SBA disaster loans approved for homeowners, renters and businesses
- $804 million obligated in FEMA Public Assistance grants to state agencies, local communities and certain private nonprofit organizations that serve the public
FEMA also reported that 261,880 people contacted FEMA for help or information and that 126,877 housing inspections have been completed. While the numbers would appear to indicate that FEMA is addressing the needs of New Jersey victims, based on the number of calls to my office each week, it is not. Victims in places like Union Beach, Ortley Beach, Point Pleasant, Lavallette, Ocean Beach and Mantoloking are not receiving the assistance with their flood insurance that they need.
On its face, $3.5 billion in NFIP payments seems like a huge amount, but based on the hundreds of claims I have reviewed, claims are being significantly underpaid and in many cases wrongfully denied. If you have been underpaid or wrongfully denied on a flood claim, please do not delay contacting an attorney who can review your claim. Deadlines are quickly approaching that can preclude any additional recovery – even if supplements have been submitted or are pending.
About the Author: Christopher W. Gerold is an attorney in Wolff & Samson’s Disaster Recovery Claims Group. Chris represents homeowners and businesses with their Sandy related insurance claims with a special focus on flood insurance. For more information on flood insurance and ways Wolff & Samson can help you with your flood insurance claim, please contact Chris at (973) 530-2061.