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DWSD Damage Claims & Sewage Backups


June 25-26, 2021 Rain Event Updates:

FEMA & SBA Assistance 

The deadline to apply was November 12, 2021. If you received a denial letter, please work directly with FEMA for the information they requested (if their deadline provided you has not passed). If you applied for a SBA Disaster Loan, you have six months to accept the loan agreement.

DWSD Claims Update for the June 25-26 rain event

If you have made a damage claim related to the June 25-26, 2021 rain event, the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD) is providing this update as of November 22, 2021:

DWSD has hired a claims administrator to handle the approximately 25,000 claims received. The administrator is currently entering all the claims into a single database and removing duplicates. This is a time-consuming process. Unlike the FEMA disaster claims which does not require liability to be proven to provide reimbursement, DWSD damage claims is a legal process driven by Michigan Public Act 222 for sewage backup claims against a municipality or utility.
Even after the database is complete and the review of claims is underway, there are 10 class action lawsuits against the City of Detroit, DWSD, the Great Lakes Water Authority, DTE Energy, and/or other entities which will further prolong getting to a final determination. It is likely other defendants will be added to the cases. Due to these lawsuits and the numerous law firms involved, it may take several years.
The historic rainfall on June 25-26 appears to be the primary cause for flooding. There may be instances where private infrastructure contributed to the backup at specific homes, such as a collapsed lateral sewer service line, damaged drain tiles, failing gutter system, and/or basement foundation issues. Claimants should understand that if there is liability confirmed they will not receive a payout in the next several months. This is going to be a long process. 
Please refrain from calling DWSD regarding the status of claims. Due to this process and the lawsuits, our customer service representatives will be unable to provide any updates. At some point, DWSD will establish a call center for claims updates, and at that time a public notice will be provided and distributed through all appropriate channels. But, again, new information will be dependent on the legal process. We ask for your continued patience. 


Great Lakes Water Authority June 25-26 rain event and July 16 rain event investigation report


DWSD Sewer Backup and Damage Claim for other events

If you experienced a sewer backup or other damage related to the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD),  you may file a claim within 45 days of the discovery of the backup using the PDF form below. Before you complete the form, call DWSD at 313-267-8000 to report the issue and get a Service Request number for your claim. You must have a DWSD Service Request number when you file your claim.