Sept. 14, 2016



NEWS DESK: 225-382-1607

SBA: 916-764-9918

Fact Sheet

FEMA Reinterment Assistance

FEMA disaster assistance may be available for reinterment efforts in Louisiana cemeteries, where floodwaters have dislodged or destroyed caskets, vaults, and mausoleums.

FEMA disaster assistance for reinterment of exposed human remains or dislodged burial vessels is available to individual survivors and cemeteries on a case-by-case basis. Factors that affect eligibility for assistance include where the cemeteries are located, who has legal responsibility for them, and who has legal ownership of them.

Information regarding reinterment assistance is available at the FEMA helpline,800-621-3362. Help is available in most languages from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., seven days a week, until further notice.

Private versus Public Cemeteries

When determining eligibility for FEMA reinterment assistance,

  • Private refers to:
    • Cemeteries owned and operated by a private entity
    • Cemeteries owned and operated by a private nonprofit (PNP) entity
    • Cemeteries maintained by an individual or family on their own private property
  • Public refers to:
    • Cemeteries owned and operated by a governmental entity
    • Abandoned private cemeteries for which a governmental entity has assumed full legal responsibility

FEMA Reinterment Assistance Regarding Private Cemeteries

  • Reinterment costs may be eligible, regardless of the cemetery type, when those costs are the legal responsibility of an individual and not the cemetery
  • Individuals or families who maintain a cemetery on their own private property may also be eligible for reinterment assistance through the Other Needs Assistance provision of FEMA’s Individuals and Households Program
  • In order to be considered for reinterment assistance from FEMA, individuals or families must register with FEMA and provide the following documentation:
    • A signed statement from an authoritative medical official (e.g., a coroner or medical examiner) stating that the disinterment was a direct result of the flooding
    • Receipts or verifiable estimates for reinterment expenses that prove the cost for reinterment will fall upon the individuals being considered for assistance
    • Any applicable documentation of burial insurance or prior reinterment assistance from any voluntary or governmental agency
  • Survivors can register with FEMA by going online with any computer, smartphone or tablet to, calling the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362, or downloading the FEMA mobile app
  • Individuals or families who receive reinterment assistance may be reimbursed for:
    • Transferring remains
    • Caskets, containers, vaults or urns that were damaged
    • Markers or headstones that were damaged
    • Necessary costs related to identifying remains
    • Necessary work at the gravesite to reinter remains
  • Individuals or families who receive FEMA reinterment assistance are responsible for understanding and abiding by any applicable local, parish, or state laws or ordinances regarding human remains and their interment

FEMA Reinterment Assistance for Public Cemeteries

  • Public cemeteries may be eligible for FEMA reinterment assistance through FEMA’s Public Assistance program
  • In order to be considered for FEMA reinterment assistance through the Public Assistance program, the owner and/or operator of the public cemetery must apply via
  • Owners and/or operators of public cemeteries who receive FEMA reinterment assistance are responsible for understanding and abiding by any applicable local, parish, or state laws or ordinances regarding human remains and their interment

If You Are Ineligible for FEMA Reinterment Assistance

  • If you are deemed ineligible for FEMA reinterment assistance, contact your local or parish government to determine if any other assistance programs are available


Monitor DOTD’s website for updated road closure information. You can find the latest information on the state’s response at GOHSEP also provides information on Facebook and Twitter. You can  receive emergency alerts on most smartphones and tablets by downloading the new Alert FM App. It is free for basic service. You can also download the Louisiana Emergency Preparedness Guide and find other information at

Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY, call 800-462-7585. If you use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 800-621-3362.

FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.  Follow us on Twitter at and the FEMA Blog at

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is the federal government’s primary source of  money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. SBA helps businesses of all sizes, private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters fund repairs or rebuilding efforts and cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property. These disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations. For more information, applicants may contact SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center by calling 800-659-2955, emailing, or visiting SBA’s website at Deaf and hard-of- hearing individuals may call 800- 877-8339.

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