FEMA and SBA Disaster Assistance for Individuals and Households: Application Process, Determinations, and Appeals [June 22, 2018] [open pdf - 1MB]
"Individuals and households that suffer uninsured or underinsured losses under a major disaster declaration typically apply for Individual Assistance (IA), administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and may also apply for disaster loans, administered by the Small Business Administration (SBA). This report opens with an overview of the two programs and a discussion about how declarations are used to put them into effect. The report also discusses their respective application processes and eligibility criteria used by FEMA and SBA to make grant and loan determinations, respectively. The report then describes the appeals process before concluding with policy observations and considerations. FEMA IA and the SBA Disaster Loan Program are interlaced to a certain degree. Functionally, SBA and FEMA have a computer matching agreement (CMA) to share real-time data on assistance provided to applicants. SBA and FEMA use the interface between their systems to identify potential duplication of benefits (DOB) and determine loan and grant eligibility. From an administrative perspective, eligibility and assistance from one source can impact eligibility and assistance from the other source."
CRS Report for Congress, R45238