Is it safe to go back home?
Consumers need to listen for direction from local officials to be sure it is safe to return home and should not enter buildings with downed wires. Snakes and rodents may enter buildings because they too have been displaced by the flood. Please share the comments at http://www.fema.gov/news/newsrelease.fema?id=26960
How can I file a flood insurance claim?
As soon as possible property owners who have flood insurance need to contact their insurance agent/company to report the claim so that a claims adjuster can come to see the property as soon as it is safe. There is a list of NFIP participating companies called the Write Your Own companies and a Summary of Coverages that policyholders should read at http://www.fema.gov/business/nfip/infoa.shtm. About 5% of NFIP policyholders are insured directly via the NFIP, their policies say NFIP and they should call (800) 638-6620 the Direct Side Contractor to report their loss. The Claims Handbook is available at
I have flood insurance, should I apply for disaster assistance?
Yes, call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362), or if necessary, TTY1 -800-462-7585.
Information is also available online at http://www.fema.gov/assistance/index.shtm. Even if you are insured via the NFIP, you may need to apply for FEMA disaster assistance to see if you are eligible for temporary housing assistance, which is not covered under the NFIP.
What if my crops are damaged?
If you have multiple peril coverage through the federal government, you may be covered for the loss of crop value as a result of all types of natural disasters, including excessive moisture. Whether a loss as a result of this disaster would be covered depends on the type of policy, coverage limits, and options you purchased. If you have a question about the type of policy you purchased, or if you are in a loss situation, you should contact the crop insurance agent from whom you purchased the policy. The following link will take you to the USDA's Risk Management Agency website where you will find additional information about the multiple peril crop insurance program: http://www.rma.usda.gov/
What if my car is damaged as a result of flood?
If your auto insurance policy includes coverage for "Other than Collision" (sometimes called "Comprehensive" coverage), the flood damage to your auto may be covered (minus your deductible amount). Under the Illinois Motor Vehicle Code [625 ILCS 5/3-117.1(b)(5)], a vehicle that has been submerged in water to the point that rising water has reached over the door sill and has entered the passenger or trunk compartment is a "flood vehicle." In this case, if the cost to repair the damage, including labor, is greater than 33 1/3% of the fair market value, your vehicle would be considered a "total loss" and your insurance company must take possession of the vehicle and apply for a salvage certificate.
If your vehicle is determined to be a total loss, you have certain rights that are explained in the Division's consumer fact sheet "Total Loss Auto Claims with Your Insurance Company (Rule 919 Exhibit A - Rights of Recourse)":