Disaster lawyers navigate bureaucratic impediments to insuranceclaims and settlement and federal recovery and relief, and they actas third-party facilitators for disaster-affected clients to help enable theirsurvival efforts. The roles of such lawyers in navigating paperwork andbureaucratic processes on behalf of survivors, while assisting them inmeeting basic daily needs, has become seen as being integral to recoveryin these processes. We utilise findings from semi-structured interviewswith disaster law practitioners working with disaster survivors in thesouth-eastern United States (SEUS) to examine the bureaucratic socio-legallife of disasters. We marshal bureaucratic violence literature to analysedisaster law practitioners’ perspectives of the socio-legal nature ofdisasters in the SEUS, demonstrating that the bureaucratic technologiesof recovery are primary obstacles to expedient recovery and successfullegal work with survivors.
Journal of Legal Anthropology