ALBANY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) — The New York State Bar Association says it will offer free consultations to people who were affected by floods caused by Tropical Storm Irene.

Association President Vincent Doyle says volunteer lawyers will be available to answer questions about insurance, property disputes, landlord-tenant matters and general legal issues. Those could include replacing a missing will or other documents.

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The bar’s Lawyer Referral and Information Service is coordinating the program. The service is available to people in the 20 counties declared disaster areas.

In August, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the damage caused to the state from Tropical Storm Irene will total $1 billion.

“Over 600 homes destroyed, six towns inundated, 150 major highways have been damaged, 22 state bridges have been closed,” Cuomo said.

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Disaster areas in New York include Albany, Clinton, Delaware, Dutchess, Essex, Greene, Montgomery, Nassau, Orange, Otsego, Rensselaer, Rockland, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Suffolk, Sullivan, Ulster, Warren, and Westchester counties.

FEMA also offers assistance programs for property owners hit hard by the storm. The various programs include grants for individuals whose insurance doesn’t cover property damage.

Victims seeking legal advice from the New York State Bar Association should call the referral service at 1-800-342-3661. Callers will have a free 30-minute consultation.

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