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FEMA will cover thousands of dollars in COVID-19 funeral expenses from 2020

Published: Mar. 25, 2021 at 7:41 PM EDT
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - (03/25/2021) - FEMA is best known for providing disaster relief from such things as hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding and earthquakes.

But a different kind of relief will soon be headed to family members of those who died from COVID-19.

More than half a million people are no longer with us, victims of the pandemic.

While the love of those who have passed will always be in the hearts and souls of family and friends, they may not have planned for unexpected funeral expenses.

That’s why FEMA announced Wednesday, two billion dollars in relief funds to reimburse family members, dealing with both emotional grief and the financial burden of those lost.

Sharp Funeral Home President Roger Sharp explained the costs involved.

“The average funeral expense today for a burial service is between eight and nine thousand dollars. So, I think FEMA is right on target with that figure of nine thousand dollars. I can imagine that it’s going to be a tremendous relief for family members.”

For those who died from late January to the end of 2020, up to nine thousand dollars will be covered for each individual.

Up to thirty five thousand if multiple members of the same family passed away due to COVID-19.

In order to get that money, there are a few steps you’ll need to take.

“They’re going to ask for a death certificate, that has the cause of death of your loved one as COVID-19, or as symptoms related to COVID-19. And, then they’re going to ask for an itemized funeral statement of the funeral goods and services,” Sharp said.

While no amount of money can help with the emotional grief, FEMA hopes this money can at least lessen the financial loss.

Beginning in April, FEMA will announce how and where you can apply for this nationwide assistance.

Look for links to help you get familiar with the process on our website and this story on ABC12.com.

A 1-800 number will be issued in the coming weeks.

Until then, gather all documentation and receipts, so you’ll be ready to file next month.

https://www.fema.gov/sites/default/files/documents/fema_policy_covid-19_funeral_assistance-updated.pdf

https://www.fema.gov/disasters/coronavirus/economic/funeral-assistance

https://www.fema.gov/disasters/coronavirus/economic/funeral-assistance/faq

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