If you can’t get an answer from a federal agency in a timely fashion, or if you feel you have been treated unfairly, our office may be able to help resolve a problem or get you the information you need. While we cannot guarantee you a favorable outcome, we will do our best to help you receive a fair and timely response to your problem.
This type of request is a multi-step process. Please complete as many fields in the form below as possible, required fields are noted. You will be contacted by staff in my office before we can inquire into your case.
Please Note: The Privacy Act of 1974 (5 U.S.C. § 552a) requires that Members of Congress or their staff have written authorization before they can obtain information about an individual’s case. We will ask for your signature to proceed with this type of request.
All Other Agencies
Click here to get help with any other agency that isn’t listed below.
Social Security Administration
The Social Security Administration handles several important federal programs. Many contact me each month with questions about their retirement, Medicare, and their applications for disability benefits. Here are a few of the most common questions my office receives that deal with this agency:
How long does it take to process Social Security Disability claims?
An application for Social Security Disability can take from 6 weeks to several years to handle, depending on a variety of factors. For more information, visit the Social Security Disability Benefits page.
Visit the Social Security Regional Site to find your local Social Security office.
The times below are merely estimates, but represent what people in the district have experienced over the past few years:
Initial Processing – 6 to 8 weeks
– Some cases are approved in this first step. If your case is denied at this level, you are encouraged to apply for Reconsideration.
Reconsideration – 6 to 8 weeks
– Like the Initial Processing, this is all done through paperwork. If your case is denied here, you are encouraged to request a hearing in front of an Administration Law Judge.
Hearings and Appeals – 9 to 12 months
– An Administrative Law Judge will hear your claim at this level. It usually takes 9 to 12 months to get a hearing. It can take a few months longer to get a decision. You may want to get an attorney or other qualified individual to help represent you in your hearing. If you are denied at this level, you can appeal your case to the Appeals Council.
Appeals Council – 24 to 36 months
– If your claim is not approved by the Appeals Council, your only option is to file a lawsuit if you want to continue your claim.
What can the Congressman do to help with my Disability claim?
I am always happy to help constituents who need assistance with a disability claim. However, there are limits to what I can do. At my request, Social Security officials will “flag” a particular case and keep me updated throughout the process. This communication can really help a person understand what is happening with their case, so they can make other decisions regarding their life and family.
However, I cannot act as the “representative” on a person’s disability paperwork. You may want an attorney to help you with this. My actions will not affect the work done by the person you select as your representative. I also do not have the authority to overturn any decision made by the Social Security Administration.
After you file the paperwork for disability benefits with your local Social Security office, I would be pleased to follow the progress of your claim. If you would like my help, contact one of my district offices.
How can I get information about my Social Security retirement benefits?
Your local Social Security office can help you with this issue. Visit the Social Security Regional Site to find your local Social Security office.
If you would like my help with a Social Security issue, please print out my Authorization Form and fax or mail it to my office.
Department of State
Before visiting a foreign country, you should ensure that all your travel concerns are addressed. Here are a few of the most common questions my office receives that deal with passports:
How can I renew my existing passport?
If you already have a passport that is not damaged, was issued in the past 15 years, was received after your 16th birthday, and has your same name, you can apply for a passport renewal by mail.
For more information on renewing your passport, visit the Passport Renewal Page at the U.S. Consular Affairs Web Site.
I can’t wait for the normal six week processing time for my application. Can I request an expedite?
Yes. For an additional fee, you can request expedited processing which normally takes two weeks.
For more information on expediting processing, visit the Expedited Service Page at the U.S. Consular Affairs Web Site.
Department of Veterans Affairs
Here are a few of the most commonly asked questions concerning the Veterans Administration:
How can I get a copy of my military records (discharge, medical, etc.)?
This is also an area where a congressional office can really help. If you are trying to get records from your military service, or that of a family member, feel free to contact my office. I will need your written permission to help with this issue.
Most military records are stored at the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis, Missouri.
Visit the National Archives website for more information.
How can I get the medals I was awarded during my service but never received?
In most cases, it is faster to get medals if you work through a congressional office. If you are owed medals from your service, just fill out the Authorization Form and fax or mail it to my office. Once I receive this information from you, I will be back in touch with you regarding any other paperwork that might be required to send the request to the proper officials.
Military medals are also an issue handled primarily through the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis.
How can I get my VA claim or appeal processed faster?
The Veterans Administration currently has many claims pending for various types of benefits. Because of that, many veterans feel that their case might be overlooked or handled improperly.
I am always glad to help in these situations. At my request, the VA will “flag” a particular case and keep me updated throughout the process. However, it is important to know that I cannot act as the “representative” on a person’s VA claim. You may still want an attorney or veterans representative to help you with this. My actions will not affect the work done by the person you select as your representative.
Visit the Department of Veterans Affairs website for more information.
Housing and Urban Development
Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is dedicated to improving affordable homeownership opportunities, increasing safe and affordable rental options, reducing homelessness, fighting housing discrimination, and supporting vulnerable populations.
HUD enforces the Fair Housing Act , which prohibits housing discrimination, and oversees the Community Development Block Grant program and the Housing Choice Voucher program (Section 8). It also supervises other programs to assist low-income and disadvantaged Americans with their housing needs.
If you have problems with apartment repairs, your landlord, public housing, or the city, we may be able to help you find a resolution.
Internal Revenue Service
The IRS is currently working through a significant backlog of 2020 electronically filed returns needing review prior to being processed. Click here to check the status of your return.
Economic Impact Payments
Economic Impact Payments are funds to help people during the coronavirus pandemic. If you didn’t get the full amount of the first or second Economic Impact Payments, you may be eligible to claim the 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit and must file a 2020 tax return even if you don’t normally file. The third Economic Impact Payment will not be used to calculate the 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit. Click here to claim the Recovery Rebate Credit. For questions and answers about the third Economic Impact Payment click here. Check your payment status in the Get My Payment tool here.
Child Tax Credit Advance Payments
Important changes to the Child Tax Credit will help many families get advance payments of the credit starting this summer. The IRS will pay half the total credit amount in advance monthly payments beginning July 15. You will claim the other half when you file your 2021 income tax return. These changes apply to tax year 2021 only. For more information, to manage payments, or to submit your payment information to receive the advance CTC, click here.
Department of Homeland Security
Common areas of assistance include immigrant visa petitions and naturalization applications processed by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
The USCIS website has information on every type of form, addresses for USCIS offices, information on fee changes, and a place to order forms online or through the mail.
How can I find out the status of my USCIS case?
Use this tool to track the status of an immigration application, petition, or request.
How can I find out the current processing times for USCIS cases?
You can check case processing times here by selecting your form number and the office that is processing your case.
Small Business Administration
The SBA has many programs to assist with economic losses related to the Covid-19 pandemic. The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) ended on May 31, 2021. Existing borrowers may be eligible for PPP loan forgiveness.
The Economic Injury and Disaster Loan (EIDL) provides funding to small businesses and non-profit organizations currently experiencing a temporary loss of revenue related to COVID-19, and an advance is available to applicants in designated low income areas hit hard by the pandemic, please check the map here to ensure you are in a designated low income area.
The Restaurant Revitalization Fund program provides emergency assistance for eligible restaurants, bars, and other qualifying businesses impacted by COVID-19.
The SBA has many loans you can apply for, such as 7(a) Loans, 504 Loans, and Microloans. 7(a) Loans is the most common loan program at the SBA. These loans are designed to help small businesses with the purchasing of real estate, short- and long-term working capital, refinancing current business debt, and various other purposes for eligible businesses. You can find more information on other loan types and even match with a lender here.
United States Postal Service
USPS Tracking Lookup can help you identify the location of your package or envelope that includes a tracking number. If you believe that your package or mail is lost, please follow these steps.
The U.S. Postal Service offers services at many locations in addition to your local post office. You can search for all of these locations by clicking here.
If you need assistance with reserving or renewing a PO box, please click here.
If you, your family, or your business is moving, you can change your address online through the United States Postal Service website by clicking here.