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Free legal aid for Almeda fire survivors with FEMA appeals

Free nonprofit legal help is still available for low-income Southern Oregonians who were impacted by the Almeda and South Obenchain fires.

Oregon Disaster Legal Services can help low-income and elderly Oregon residents with many wildfire related issues stemming from the Labor Day fires that include help with Federal Emergency Management Agency applications, and locals who need help with the FEMA appeals process after their application was denied, according to a release issued last week by the Oregon Office of Emergency Management.

The free legal service is offered for qualified locals through the state’s legal aid offices, which include the Oregon Law Center, Legal Aid Services of Oregon and the Center for Non-Profit Legal Services.

The Legal Aid Services of Oregon’s Disaster Relief Program prioritizes needs in civil law that include “food, shelter, medical care, income maintenance and physical safety,” according to the agency’s website at oregondisasterlegalservices.org.

For information about whether an individual qualifies for free legal help, call the Wildfire Disaster Relief hotline at 1-844-944-2428 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays or Fridays between 9 and 11:30 a.m. Staff who speak Spanish are available.

Those who don’t qualify for legal aid assistance through the Oregon Disaster Legal Services can seek free legal advice to help with FEMA appeals through the Oregon State Bar’s Disaster Legal Assistance hotline at 1-800-452-7636 or 503-684-3763.