Legal Counsel

You may be eligible for 1 form of assistance.

Forms of Assistance without Online Applications
Disaster Legal Services (DLS)
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Program Description

Disaster Legal Services (DLS) provides legal assistance to low-income individuals who, prior to or as a result of a disaster, are unable to secure legal services adequate to meet their disaster-related needs. When the President declares a major disaster, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, through an agreement with the Young Lawyers Division of the American Bar Association, provides free legal assistance to low income disaster survivors. Legal assistance includes counseling and advice, referral to appropriate sources of legal services and legal representation in non-fee-generating cases. Cases that may generate a fee are turned over to the local lawyer referral service. The legal assistance is provided by a range of participating attorneys, law firms, not-for-profit legal services providers, Legal Services Corporation recipients, state and local bar associations and pro bono organizations.

Local lawyers typically provide assistance such as:

  • Help with insurance claims for doctor and hospital bills, loss of property, loss of life, etc.
  • Drawing up new wills, powers of attorney and other legal documents lost during the disaster
  • Help with home repair contracts and contractors
  • Advice on problems with landlords


General Program Requirements
In order to qualify for this benefit program, you must be a survivor of a presidentially-declared major disaster.
Application Process
To find out if your state has a Disaster Legal Services program, call the FEMA Helpline 1-800-621-FEMA (1-800-621-3362). For the hearing impaired, please call 1-800-462-7585.
Program Contact Information
Please note that when you contact the following numbers, you will be directed to available disaster-specific assistance and information. You will not receive direct legal assistance at that time.

You can call us toll free at:

For the hearing impaired, please call:

Headquarters Office:
Federal Emergency Management Agency
Recovery Division
Washington, DC 20472

For more information, please visit the following websites:
Managing Agency
U.S. Department of Homeland Security