Disaster Assistance and Emergency Relief for Industries and Businesses

Are you an individual or a business that has suffered economic losses due to a disaster? You might qualify for financial assistance or tax relief from the government. But where can you turn to?

Know which agencies are providing help to aid disaster victims recover from damages resulting from natural calamities.

If your place has been hit by a disaster, and that calamity was declared as such by a presidential order, you may be entitled to financial assistance or tax privileges from the government. The key is to know where you should go to avail of these help.

Assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency

FEMA provides money for housing and necessary expenses for food and clothing as well as medicines. It provides money to disaster victims to help them pay for the cost of staying in rented places or government housing for a certain period of time. It also provides money to homeowners to enable them to pay for repairs or replace destroyed homes when their insurance does not cover for such. In special areas where no other type of housing assistance is available, FEMA could provide direct assistance or money to construct a home. Other than housing needs, FEMA could provide money for disaster-related health services costs, funeral and burial, among others.

Assistance from the Small Business Administration

The Small Business Administration is offering low interest disaster loans to individuals, businesses and organizations to help them recover from damages brought by disasters to properties, inventories and vehicles. For individuals, it offers disaster assistance loans. Application may be by mail or online through the Electronic Loan Application. The SBA also provides economic injury loans to small businesses unable to obtain credit anywhere else. This is offered to businesses that suffered from physical or agricultural production disaster resulting to substantial economic injury, which prevents them from meeting maturing obligations and paying ordinary operating expenses. Loans provided could be up to $2.0 million, depending on actual economic injury and need for financial assistance.

It also has the Home and Property Disaster Loans to help homeowners and renters rebuild and replace uninsured or underinsured property damaged by disaster.

Assistance from the Farm Services Agency

The Farm Services Agency also provides farm loan programs to family-size farmers and ranchers who are unable to obtain credit from banks and lending institutions because they don't have enough financial resources. These loans can be used to purchase farm supplies and equipment.

Tax Relief Offered by the IRS to Disaster Victims

The Internal Revenue Service may extend the deadline within which individual taxpayers and businesses may file returns and pay taxes to help them recover financially after a disaster. Also, it may process refunds faster to individuals and businesses that declared losses related to the disaster in their tax return for the prior year. It also offers disaster kits to help individuals and businesses claim un-reimbursed casualty losses for disaster-damaged property.


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