Bushfire survivor Sue Townsend feels stuck in limbo.
She is tired of having to prove, over and over again, that fire destroyed her home in the NSW town of Tumbarumba.
She wants to move forward, but can't.
"You're sitting there in limbo," Professor Townsend told the bushfires royal commission.
"That's really what I can't deal with. From what I've seen with people around me in the community, it's that limbo that's just taking us down."
Prof Townsend and her husband did not have the financial worry about the clean-up, but the wait has been stressful for them and others.
She saw a man experience heart problems while talking to his insurance company one day.
"I really thought that he was going to die," the Wiradjuri woman and professor of indigenous Australian studies said.
"It's just that people are slowly breaking down and the virus coming along has made it even harder. Everything seems to keep hitting brick walls and we don't seem to be able to move forward."
Prof Townsend criticised the confusing, difficult, "hit and miss" process of getting the support promised to bushfire survivors.
She was initially knocked back for money from the Red Cross because she could not produce utility bills.
She told them: "This is ridiculous - your house is burning down, the last thing you think about grabbing is the utilities bill."
Prof Townsend is grateful she and her husband have received about $50,000 in support over the past five months.
"It's a lot of money, but it's not for what's happened and for what we need to lay out."
She feels fortunate to have a well-paying job, but does not think the funds raised by charitable organisations are reaching those who need help with living expenses as well as rebuilding.
"It's very expensive actually being homeless, so to speak," she said in pre-recorded evidence played at a royal commission hearing on Monday.
"It's not just your normal living. It's much more expensive to live like this."
After having to repeatedly prove her house had burned down to access help, Prof Townsend called for a one-stop shop to co-ordinate the services aiding bushfire victims.
"I think we can change the way people are made to constantly jump through hoops and to constantly have to justify why they're in need."