Free legal assistance available to St. Louis area flood victims
ST. LOUIS, Mo. – Free legal assistance is available to Missourians in the City of St. Louis and St. Charles and St. Louis counties who need help with flood-related issues, such as home repair contracts and insurance claims.
St. Louis area residents can call 800-829-4128 to leave a message about legal issues arising from damage caused by severe storms and flooding July 25-28. When leaving a message, include your name, phone number, and county of residence. Volunteer Missouri lawyers will return calls as soon as possible.
Lawyers have the training and skills to help navigate disagreements that arise after a disaster. Disaster-related legal assistance may include counseling on:
- Landlord-tenant issues and mortgage foreclosures
- Replacement of wills and other important legal documents lost or destroyed in the disaster
- Consumer protection issues like price gouging and avoiding contractor scams during the rebuilding process.
- Life, medical, and property insurance claims
Consultations with lawyers are confidential.
The toll-free disaster hotline is a partnership between The Missouri Bar, the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division, and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
The disaster hotline went live Aug. 10 following President Joe Biden signing a major disaster declaration Gov. Mike Parson requested regarding severe flooding in the St. Louis region. This Aug. 8 declaration allows residents in the City of St. Louis and St. Charles and St. Louis counties to receive assistance from FEMA.
Missouri residents can also submit their flood-related legal questions to Missouri.FreeLegalAnswers.org, a free virtual legal advice clinic where volunteer Missouri lawyers answer questions from low to moderate income Missourians. Missouri.FreeLegalAnswers.org is produced in partnership with The Missouri Bar and the American Bar Association.
Missouri Legal Services Disaster Manual
The Missouri Legal Services Disaster Manual is a free document designed to help both recovery volunteers and those directly impacted by a disaster understand their rights under the law, as well as what assistance programs may be available. This manual includes information on protecting yourself from scams around home repair and debris removal, replacing lost documents, and understanding your rights as a tenant or landlord. Click here to download the manual.
Other disaster recovery resources
Biden’s major disaster declaration for Missouri allows residents in the City of St. Louis and St. Louis and St. Charles counties to receive assistance from FEMA’s Individual Assistance program. Eligible residents can seek federal assistance with temporary housing, housing repairs, replacement of damaged belongings, vehicles, and other qualifying expenses resulting from flooding.
To apply for assistance, visit www.DisasterAssistance.gov or call FEMA’s toll-free application line at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). Click here to visit FEMA’s disaster assistance page for the St. Louis area.
The state’s recovery website, Recovery.mo.gov, offers several resources to help those impacted by disasters. Assistance includes information about debris removal, fraud detection, stress management, family assistance, and more. It also provides outlets for Missouri residents to report scams and road damage.
Individuals with unmet needs impacted by flooding in the St. Louis area can contact United Way by calling 2-1-1 or visiting 211helps.org for assistance.
The Missouri Bar is a statewide organization dedicated to improving the legal profession, the law, and the administration of justice for all Missourians. Created in 1944 by order of the Supreme Court of Missouri, it serves all 30,000 of Missouri’s practicing lawyers. The Missouri Bar provides a wide range of services and resources to lawyers, the public, the media, and educators. For lawyer and media resources, visit MoBar.org. For information pertinent to the public and educators, visit MissouriLawyersHelp.org.