FEMA Extends Benefits Deadline For Wildfire Victims

New Mexico Legal Aid has learned that the deadline for applying for FEMA assistance has been extended to August 4th, 2022. This gives New Mexicans more time to apply for federal disaster benefits. The previous deadline was July 5th.

New Mexico Legal Aid has joined the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the State Bar of New Mexico Young Lawyers Division, and the American Bar Association to assist New Mexico wildfire victims. We are urging New Mexicans to get their FEMA applications submitted.  The State of New Mexico also has disaster unemployment and disaster SNAP benefits available for Wildfire Victims.  We encourage New Mexicans to apply for those even though the deadlines already expired (See below).

“Legal assistance nonprofits like New Mexico Legal Aid have historically worked in conjunction with the American Bar Association and state and local bar associations to provide free “disaster legal services” in areas impacted by disaster declarations,” NMLA Executive Director Lewis Creekmore said. “We will assist with FEMA applications, appeals of denials, document replacement and litigation related to FEMA/disaster issues. We will also assist legal non-FEMA issues that arise because of the fire impact, including D-SNAP and disaster unemployment assistance.”

On Saturday, July 23 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. please join our in-person disaster legal resources and assistance clinic at New Mexico Highlands University. Also, the State Bar of New Mexico, Young Lawyers division has a legal hotline currently available to connect wildfire evacuees to free legal services in qualifying counties impacted by the federal disaster declaration. The helpline is primarily for survivors/victims from Colfax, Lincoln, Mora, San Miguel, Valencia counties but anyone impacted by the fires can call. Evacuees can call (888)985-5141. The hotline is staffed from Monday- Friday, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. MST please leave a message if calling after hours. New Mexico Legal Aid will work closely with the State Bar of New Mexico, Young Lawyers Division, FEMA, Legal Services Corporation, Red Cross and CYFD to help those impacted by the wildfires recover.



Helpline callers may get help with legal issues such as:


● FEMA and other financial benefits, including denials

● Assistance for agricultural producer and small businesses

● Document replacement

● Price gouging, scams, or identity theft

● Landlord and tenant problems, or threats of foreclosure and eviction

● Home repair contracts, insurance property claims and denials


Survivors can call the hotline anytime and leave a message if calling after hours.



Deadlines have passed for two disaster benefit programs, but we urge federal disaster victims to submit applications even if you think you're ineligible.


Disaster SNAP (food benefits):  Deadline passed June 13, 2022.

Apply Here: https://www.hsd.state.nm.us/2022/06/05/disaster-supplemental-nutrition-assistance-program-d-snap-frequently-asked-questions-faqs/


Disaster Unemployment Assistance:  Deadline passed June 15, 2022 (self-employed people are eligible too)

Apply Here:  https://www.dws.state.nm.us/DUA





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