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COVID-19 Funeral Assistance

Here is an overview of the COVID-19 Funeral Expense Assistance.

Beginning April 12, 2021 FEMA will be accepting phone applications for COVID19 Funeral Assistance

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 January 20, 2020.

COVID-19 Funeral Assistance Line Number

844-684-6333 ● TTY: 800-462-7585

Hours of Operation:

Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. EST

Who is Eligible?

To be eligible for funeral assistance, you must meet these conditions:

  • 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.
  • The applicant must be a U.S. citizen, non-citizen national, or qualified alien who incurred funeral expenses after January 20, 2020.
  • There is no requirement for the deceased person to have been a U.S. citizen, non-citizen national, or qualified alien.
If you had COVID-19 funeral expenses, FEMA encourages you to keep and gather documentation. Types of information should include:
  • An official death certificate that attributes the death directly or indirectly to COVID-19 and shows that the death occurred in the United States, including the U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia.
  • Funeral expenses documents (receipts, funeral home contract, etc.) that includes the applicant’s name, the deceased person’s name, the amount of funeral expenses, and the dates the funeral expenses happened.
  • Proof of funds received from other sources specifically for use toward funeral costs. We are not able to duplicate benefits received from burial or funeral insurance, financial assistance received from voluntary agencies, government agencies, or other sources.

The application to apply for Funeral Expense Reimbursement will be by phone only. FEMA shared that the maximum financial assistance will be $9,000 per funeral.

The applicant must be who paid for the funeral expense. If more than one person paid the funeral expense all documentation can be submitted however only one applicant will receive the reimbursement. FEMA will not reimburse multiple people for a funeral expense. If you used life insurance to pay for the funeral that was considered your money as the beneficiary and you paid for the funeral.

When you call to do the phone application FEMA instructs to have the following information ready:

  • Your social security number
  • Your date of birth
  • Your household annual gross income – this is information they collect your
  • Your email
  • Your mailing address
  • Your phone number
  • Name, Social Security Number, date of birth and date of death for the deceased
  • The location or address where the death occurred.
FEMA said to allot 20 minutes for the phone application. FEMA will issue you an application number and will mail out a package to you once the phone application is completed.

You will have to provide documentation of the funeral expenses by submitting the Funeral Contract, Cemetery Contract, Monument Contract, etc. FEMA states the easiest way to get the funeral expense documents/contracts/receipts to them is by establishing an account through www.disasterassistance.gov website.

Once you are on disasterassistance.gov homepage you will choose the menu Get Assistance then choose Apply Online or in the lower middle of the home page is a blue button you can select that states Apply Online. You will need to go through the steps and set up your online account with them. You will be able to scan your funeral expense documents and submit them through your disasterassistance.gov account. You CAN establish the account before you do the phone application. Once your phone application is complete you can log into your disasterassitance.gov account and scan and submit your documentation to them.

If you are not comfortable establishing a disasterassistance.gov account, you can wait for the packet FEMA will mail you and follow the instructions. FEMA stated the fastest most accurate way is to establish the online account however mailing documentation to them can be done once you receive you packet from FEMA.

NOTE. If applicants already received reimbursement for certain funeral expenses through government agencies, voluntary agencies, non-profits, burial or funeral insurance, they cannot resubmit those same expenses for reimbursement through this FEMA-administered program. If the deceased had a paid for preneed account for their funeral expenses those are considered burial/funeral insurance and is not eligible for reimbursement. If there were cost incurred that were not covered in the preneed funeral account then those cost can be submitted for example; the Preneed Funeral Account covered everything except the obituary, death certificates, etc. those cost can be submitted for reimbursement. Any expense not covered under the preneed funeral contract can be reimbursed.

Now is a good time to gather your documentation and information to prepare for the phone application and also set up your disasterassistance.gov account.

Beginning April 12th

COVID-19 Funeral Assistance Line Number

844-684-6333 ● TTY: 800-462-7585

Hours of Operation:

Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. EST

For more information visit www.disasterassistance.gov

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COVID-19 Funeral Assistance

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