UPDATE: Families That Lost Loved Ones to Covid-19 Can Now Apply for Reimbursement from FEMA

Families that lost loved ones to Covid-19 can now apply to receive up to $9,000 in reimbursements from the federal government for funeral costs. 

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which is distributing the funds, has launched a hotline for families to apply for the reimbursement, but warned that families may have to be patients as they are already experiencing high call volumes that are leading to some technical issues.

The $50 billion in funding allocated to the reimbursement program was included in the $900 billion coronavirus relief bill passed in December and in the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan passed under President Biden.

US citizens can apply for the reimbursement on behalf of one or more deceased family members, with FEMA suggesting one person applying as an applicant and others as co-applicants if funeral expenses were split among several people.

Reimbursement amounts will vary based on funeral costs and the number of deceased family members. FEMA will provide up to $9,000 for each deceased individual’s funeral and burial costs, up to $35,500 per applicant if they suffered multiple deaths.

Applications are only being accepted over the phone as of now. To apply, call 1-844-684-6333 on weekdays between 9 am and 9 pm Eastern Time.

Applicant should have with them as much documentation as possible, including an official death certificate; documents detailing funeral and burial expenses such as receipts of services provided.

FEMA will reimburse costs such as transfer of remains, burial plot, casket, headstones, funeral home, clergy, among others.

Applicants can choose to receive the reimbursement by check or direct deposit.

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