Matthew Redding, FEMA’s Deputy Director of Individual Assistance, says the agency has paid more than $1 billion to 150,000 people who have applied for help covering coronavirus funeral expenses.
The government provides a maximum of $9,000 per deceased individual and up to $35,000 per application for U.S. citizens who can provide proof their family member died of COVID-19 and had qualified expenses not covered by some other source.
Redding says the U.S. government has no projected end date for the funeral assistance. “FEMA has sufficient resources to continue this mission as the nation continues to grapple with so much loss,” he said.
In some cases, there’s been assistance for multiple family members since the program launched nearly three months ago. FEMA has provided funeral assistance in the past but never on this scale.
More than 619,000 people have died in the U.S. from COVID-19, according to Johns Hopkins University.
Additional reporting by The Associated Press.