This past wildfire season, numerous regions and communities were affected by devastating wildfires, thus CalVet has gathered the following resources to help veterans and their families stay informed and get back on their feet following such natural disasters.
We encourage all veterans to visit their local County Veterans Service Offices (CVSOs) for assistance with filing claims, replacing service-related and benefits documents, and receiving job placement assistance. Find more information about U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs operations and assistance, as well as the status of CVSO offices in areas impacted by wildfires below. A complete list of CVSOs with contact information is available here.
FEMA, the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services and local partners continue to help California wildfire survivors recover and rebuild. To locate housing options, receive aid or file a claim, click here.
Two Disaster Recovery Centers (DRC) are open in Chico and Oroville to assist residents with recovery resources. Local, state and federal agencies, along with community organizations, have assembled at these DRCs and are ready to answer questions about disaster assistance.
All residents and businesses impacted can go to www.disasterassistance.gov and register right away. Registration with FEMA can be also done by calling (800) 621-FEMA (3362).
Please have the following information available when you register: Social Security number, address of damaged home or apartment, description of the damage, information about insurance coverage, telephone number, mailing address, bank account and routing numbers for direct deposit of funds.
Mobile Disaster Recovery Center Locations
Mobile Disaster Recovery Centers (MDRCs) will be visiting six locations in five northern California counties beginning Monday, Dec. 17. The mobile units are a convenience for displaced survivors of the November wildfires who have relocated and are unable to travel to fixed-site Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) in Butte County. Read the full announcement. (Español)
Ventura County also opened DRCs in response to the local wildfires and are open Monday to Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
DRCs are accessible for individuals with disabilities and access and functional needs. They have on-site communication accessibility tools, including amplified listening devices, Video Relay Interpreting and CapTel phones. ASL interpreters are available upon request.
For businesses affected by the wildfires in Ventura County, a Business Recovery Center (BRC) has opened in Camarillo: 4001 Mission Oaks Boulevard | Suite B, Camarillo, CA 93012.
The Small Business Administration (SBA) offers low-interest disaster loans to businesses, private nonprofits, homeowners and renters. Businesses and private nonprofits my borrow up to $2 million dollars for physical damage and economic injury (working capital needs). SBA representatives at the Business Recovery Centers will provide one-on-one assistance regarding disaster loans, answer questions and assist businesses with completing the SBA application. The SBA is the federal government's primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property.
Survivors are encouraged to file insurance claims for damages to their cars, homes and businesses. Survivors who have unmet emergency needs may apply for aid online at DisasterAssistance.gov or by phone at 800-621-3362 or (TTY) 800-462-7585. Applicants who use 711 or Video Relay Service may call 800-621-3362. Multi-lingual operators are available. The toll-free numbers are open daily 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. PST.
Businesses and residents can visit sba.gov/disaster or call SBA's Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955. Deaf or hard of hearing may call 800-877-8339.
Applicants for disaster assistance should have the following information available:
California residents in Butte, Los Angeles and Ventura counties can find the closest DRC by going online at https://egateway.fema.gov/ESF6/DRCLocator or texting 43362 with the message DRC and their ZIP Code. Standard message and data rates apply.
FEMA assistance is nontaxable and will not affect eligibility for Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid or other federal benefits.
If you have a CalVet Home Loan with CalVet fire and hazard insurance and were evacuated or experienced property damage due to fire and/or smoke, please contact York Field Services 24-hour hotline at (800) 626-1613 to begin the claim process. For additional information, call 1-866-421-6978, or click here.
For assistance with billing, please call our customer/account services team at 1-866-653-2504.
The Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) may be able to assist eligible veterans with accelerated claims processing, temporary housing and suspended debt payments. Veterans who are experiencing chronic homelessness or homelessness due to the fire can find information about housing assistance for veterans.
If you have a VA Home Loan, contact the VA Loan Servicing division at 877-827-3702.
For more information about federal assistance for veterans, refer to:
VBA Benefits Call Center: 1-800-827-1000
Veterans Crisis Line: 1-800-273-8255
Click here to view a press release regarding resources and other information for veterans impacted by the Camp Fire in Butte County.
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